CDC: Teen pregnancy rate is declining

April 17, 2008

From 1990 to 2004, the teen pregnancy rate dropped 38%, according to a report released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Unwed mothers are now more commonly women, not teenagers.

From 1990 to 2004, the teen pregnancy rate dropped 38%, according to a report released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Unwed mothers are now more commonly women, not teenagers.

The proportion of pregnancies among teens under age 20 dropped from 15% in 1990 to 12% in 2004. In addition, the report found a historic low of 72.2 pregnancies for every 1,000 girls and women ages 15 to 19 in 2004. An important factor in these data was a decline in pregnancy rates among sexually experienced teenagers, a population at increased risk for pregnancy compared to sexually inexperienced teenagers.

The authors of the report noted that evidence suggesting an increase in the use of contraceptives at first intercourse and at most recent intercourse, as well as a decreased desire to become teenage mothers, may have contributed to this decline.