Teenage Contraception Use on the Rise, Says CDC

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Earlier this month, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) unveiled new data suggesting more teen girls are using birth control. Part of the “Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report,” the data was compiled from several National Survey of Family Growth (NSFG) cycles.

According to the report, approximately 60 percent of sexually active teens reported using contraceptive methods considered “highly effective” by the CDC, such as hormonal treatments or intrauterine devices – an increase from 47 percent in 1995. Additionally, the CDC report estimated that 57 percent of females ages 15 to 19 reported they’d never had sex, up from 49 percent in 1995.

The new report analyzed NFSG data collected from three different intervals – 1995, 2002, and a five-year survey encompassing findings from 2006 to 2010. The report noted several racial discrepancies in the rates of contraceptive usage, with African-American and Hispanic teenagers using birth control at lower rates than their white counterparts. According to the CDC findings, although an estimated 66 percent of white teens reported using highly effective contraceptive methods, only 46 percent of sexually active Hispanic teens and 54 percent of sexually active African-American teens reported using the same methods.

The most recent NFSG survey cycle found approximately 73 percent of female teens ages 15 to 17 and 36 percent of females ages 18 to 19 reported never having sex.

In 2010, the CDC reported the teen birth rate in the United States had plummeted nearly 44 percent from the national rate in 1990 – the lowest it’s been in seven decades.