Effects of teenage pregnancy

Updated November 21, 2016

Teen pregnancy is always a serious matter. Most teens are unprepared to have a baby and sometimes seek alternatives to having the baby, such as adoption and abortion. Other girls take precautions and use birth control and condoms to prevent pregnancy. There is, however, still a percentage of girls that get pregnant in their teens and make the decision to have and keep their baby. The effects of pregnancy on a teen can be intense and long-lasting.

Physical Changes

Teen girls may not be prepared for the physical toll that pregnancy causes on one’s body. As the baby develops and the uterus expands, a girl’s hormones will begin to change and play havoc with her moods, which could be very difficult for a young woman already in emotional turmoil. She will also need to change her lifestyle to get more sleep and may not be able to participate in sports or other extra-curricular activities because of her changing body. She may also need to change her diet to include nutrients and vitamins she was not getting previously.

Emotional Effects

Many teens that get pregnant become scared and panicked. Confusion about the right decision to make for herself and her child, resentment of the child’s father and fear about giving birth may all cause her a great deal of stress. This, combined with the hormones from her changing body, may result in a very erratic and unhealthy emotional state. She may also be frustrated that she can no longer participate in activities with her friends and frightened that she will be a poor mother or that her parents will react badly.

Long-Lasting Effects

Graduation rate for pregnant teenagers is rather low. Pregnancy often requires so much of a young girl that she finds she can’t physically or emotionally handle attending school and preparing to give birth or take care of her baby. Many girls also leave school because of embarrassment, and only a few of these girls finish their education later or go on to higher education. As a result, pregnant teens have less of a chance of being financially stable and giving their children a safe, stable environment.

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