Why is teenage pregnancy bad?

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Most reasons are based on society's view, some are medical, and some are due to how children and teens are being raised in this day and age.

Once upon a time, it was normal, even expected, for very young girls to become mothers and wives, but in most of today's societies this is unacceptable. As average life expectancy has come up, as has the ages in which most people in some societies to find certain things acceptable. Most young girls in this day and age are not mentally/emotionally equipped to bear the burdens of motherhood.


Medical reasons include the following:

Pregnant teens have a higher risk of getting high blood pressure -- called pregnancy-induced hypertension -- than pregnant women in their 20s or 30s. They also have a higher risk of preeclampsia. This is a dangerous medical condition that combines high blood pressure with excess protein in the urine, swelling of a mother's hands and face, and organ damage.
These medical risks affect the pregnant teen, who may need to take medications to control symptoms. But they can also disrupt the unborn baby's growth. And, they can lead to further pregnancy complications such as premature birth.
Teens are at higher risk of having low-birth-weight babies. Premature babies are more likely to weigh less than they should. In part, that's because they've had less time in the womb to grow. A low-birth-weight baby weighs only 3.3 to 5.5 pounds (1,500 to 2,500 grams). A very-low-birth-weight baby weighs less than 3.3 pounds. Babies that small may need to be put on a ventilator in a hospital's neonatal care unit for help with breathing after birth.


Teen pregnancy and parenting is not necessarily 'bad', though it is not necessarily 'good' either.
 How to lower the health risks of teen pregnancy
If you are a teenager who is pregnant, here is how to ensure a healthy teen pregnancy:
  • Get early prenatal care. Call your doctor for your first prenatal visit as soon as you think you might be pregnant. If you can't afford to see a doctor, ask your school nurse or counselor to help you find a low-cost clinic and other resources. For example, they can help you find state Medicaid or WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) programs.
  • Stay away from alcohol, drugs, and cigarettes. These harm a growing fetus even more than they harm a growing teenager. If you're not able to quit by yourself, ask for help from someone you trust.
  • Take a prenatal vitamin with at least 0.4 mg of folic acid every day to help prevent birth defects. Ideally, this should start before you get pregnant.
  • Ask for emotional support. Being a mother brings untold emotional and practical challenges -- especially for teens still in school. Reach out to others -- your friends, family, the baby's father -- for emotional and practical support.

For teenagers who are healthy and strong, chances are good of delivering a healthy, strong baby -- especially with early prenatal care and a healthy lifestyle during pregnancy.
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