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Get the Facts Straight on Teenage Pregnancy

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For many teenagers, “pregnancy” is among the scariest words in the English language. On top of the mere idea of having a child at such a young age, teens also have to worry about how to tell their parents and where they can get free pregnancy help. Before panicking, however, it’s important for all teens to get the facts about teenage pregnancy — and, more importantly, to be able to separate the facts about teenage pregnancy from the myths.

If you are finding yourself at a loss for what to do next, here are some myths and facts you should know teen pregnancy:

MYTH: You can’t get pregnant the first time you have sex.

FACT: If you have had unprotected or inadequately protected sex, you can get pregnant no matter how many times you have had intercourse before. For many teenage girls, however, the challenge comes in being able to tell the difference between premenstrual syndrome and the early warning signs of pregnancy. While bloating, cramping, nausea, and irritability can occur during both, the telltale sign of pregnancy for most girls is a missed period.

MYTH: Teen pregnancy and abortion rates have gone up in recent years.

FACT: In truth, these figures have actually declined significantly in recent decades. According the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the live birth rate for teens dropped to a low since 1991 to a rate of 29.4 per 1,000 teen girls. Additionally, abortions also fell by 64% between 1990 and 2010 to 15 per 1,000 teen girls.

MYTH: You are on your own for things like pregnancy tests and information on pregnancy.

FACT: Thanks to the many teen pregnancy centers around the country, you can receive free pregnancy tests, advice, and other facts about teenage pregnancy issues like adoption and abortion. If you’d like more information on teen pregnancy, be sure to visit your nearest teen pregnancy center for free pregnancy help, testing, and guidance during this time. You can also leave a comment below with general questions.

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