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Respond to other student’s responses with substantive comments. Substantive comments add to the discussion and provide your fellow students with information that will enhance the learning environment.The postings should be at least one paragraph (approximately 100 words) and include references.

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  1. References and citations should conform to the APA 6th edition.
  2. Remember: Please respect the opinions of others, even if their views differ. In other words, disagree professionally and respectfully.Plagiarism is never acceptable – give credit when credit is due – cite your sources

Sandra’s Post

Per the CDC, it is estimated that teen births in the U.S. have declined greatly over the last 20 years to the lowest level ever recorded, but still more than 86,000 teens ages 15 to 17 gave birth in 2012 (CDC, 2018). Teenage pregnancy has been characterized as a reoccurring cycle in which young women become mothers and their daughters are more likely to follow in their footsteps. Literature shows that this pattern is more pronounced among individuals of lower socio-economic status, with risk factors for teenage childbearing associated with receiving social assistance, being raised in single parent homes, and having parents with low levels of education (Smith, Gilmer, Salge, Dickerson, & Wilson, 2013). Issues of teenage pregnancy are further complicated because young teen mothers are at greater risk of having successive pregnancies before the age of twenty (Smith et al., 2013).

From 2010 to 2015, CDC, the federal Office of Adolescent Health (OAH), and the Office of Population Affairs collaborated to demonstrate the effectiveness of innovative community-wide initiatives in reducing rates of teen pregnancy and births in communities with the highest rates, with a focus on reaching African American and Latino or Hispanic young people aged 15 to 19 years (CDC, 2017). Nationally funding agencies as well as State and community-based partners involved in teen pregnancy awareness and prevention such as Advocates for Youth, CAI Network, Healthy Teen Network, JSI Research and Training Institute, and Power to Decide have made great strides in educating those involved in prevention teaching as well as the at risk population.

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) can help the practitioner stay well-informed of evidence-based practice advances and up to date information to better assist our diverse patient populations. Regarding prevention strategy grading, the USPSTF indicates that behavioral counseling interventions to reduce substance misuse which can lead to poor decision making and in turn increase the risk of adolescent pregnancy shows high certainty that the net benefit is moderate or there is moderate certainty that the net benefit is moderate to substantial. Describing the strength of a recommendation is an important part of communicating its importance to clinicians and other users (USPSTF, 2018).

For those schools which provide sex education courses with parental/ guardian consent topics closely related to teen pregnancy prevention can address alcohol and drug misuse which can impair decision making and lead to unprotected sex. The USPSTF recommends that clinicians screen young adults and those aged 18 years or older for alcohol misuse and provide persons engaged in risky or hazardous drinking with brief behavioral counseling interventions to reduce alcohol misuse (USPSTF, 2018). Another related topic is intimate partner abuse which can also lead to feelings of loss of self-worth, decrease self-esteem, and coercion to have unprotected sex for fear of losing trust, love, or relationship status. These associated issues need to be addressed in conjunction with pregnancy prevention since they can be concurrently related.

The USPSTF recommends intensive behavioral counseling for all sexually active adolescents and for adults who are at increased risk for sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Although all women are at potential risk for abuse, factors that elevate risk include young age and substance abuse as previously mentioned. Taking into consideration the guidance provided by the CDC and USPSTF the topic of birth control among teens can be approached by providing confidential, respectful, and culturally appropriate services that meet the needs of teenagers. Earlier delivery of sex education may enhance prevention efforts. Encourage teens who are not sexually active to continue to wait since abstinence is the most effective method. Furthermore, offer sexually active teens a broad range of contraceptive methods and encourage them to use the most effective methods as well as counseling about the importance of condom use to prevent pregnancy and STI’s. Education is a vital component in any prevention plan, and engaging the teenager in dialogue which helps them comprehend the impact certain decisions will make on their lives can be ever changing and of great significance starting with the kinds of choices that they make.

References

Center for Disease Control and Prevention (2017) Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/teenpregnancy/projects-initiatives/

Power to Decide/ The Campaign to Prevent Unplanned Pregnancy (2018) Retrieved from https://powertodecide.org/

Smith, M. L., Gilmer, M. H., Salge, L. E., Dickerson, J. B., & Wilson, K. L. (2013). Who enrolls in teen parent education programs? an emphasis on personal and familial characteristics and services received. Child & Adolescent Social Work Journal, 30(1), 21-36. doi: http://dx.doi.org.prx-herzing.lirn.net/10.1007/s10…

U.S. Preventative Services Task Force (2018) Retrieved from https://www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org/Page…

Hollie’s Post

Even though the teenage birth rate has declined 52% in 20 years, there is still a need for prevention programs addressing teenage pregnancies (Koh, 2014). Teenage pregnancy has a significant impact on emotional and social health, as well as, financial consequences that affect both parents and their children (Koh, 2014). Research also shows that teenage girls that have babies are less likely to finish high school or attend college; more likely to rely on public assistance; and more likely to live in poverty (Koh, 2014). These problems not only affect the teenage mothers, but they also have a substantial impact on the child too. Children born to teenagers are more likely to have poorer long-term educational, behavioral, and health outcomes (Koh, 2014).

While many evidence-based interventions have been successful in reducing teenage pregnancies and preventing sexually transmitted infections, there is a need to update programs to consider the current trends in society (Scribner-O’Pray, 2017). Because randomized controlled trials are needed to evaluate an evidence-based intervention (EBI), the process of updating programs with newer, relevant EBIs is difficult (Scribner-O’Pray, 2017). The impact of technology, the media, and the internet are a few things that need to be addressed (Scribner-O’Pray, 2017).

There is a wide variety of sex education being taught in schools. The number of abstinence-based education programs have largely declined. Abstinence-based programs typically emphasize goals and dreams while promoting abstinence beliefs and attitudes (Manlove, Fish, & Moore, 2015). These programs show mixed results, though less than half of these types of programs are said to be effective (Manlove et al., 2015). Comprehensive sex-education programs often last at least 3 months, though some range from a full school year to multiyear programs. They focus on improving reproductive health outcomes, including preventing pregnancies and STIs, and promote both abstinence and contraceptive use (Manlove et al., 2015). Though these programs are only 50-70% effective, they present the best current option for school-based programs (Manlove et al., 2015).

As a nurse practitioner, it is important that I provide education and support to all individuals or parents that request birth control options. My main goal would first be to establish trust with the teenager. If there is trust in a relationship, the teenager will be more likely to speak freely and ask questions. Based on the evidence above, school-based programs and community based programs are not 100% effective. Reinforcing the things they have heard previously or providing new information may be just what the teenager needs to make decisions about engaging in sexual intercourse. I would also encourage the child and the parent to talk about sexual behavior and relationships together. There is a lot of research showing that parent-youth relationship programs are effective (Manlove et al., 2015). All in all, the teenager needs to hear the truth—including the risks of sexual intercourse and also the risks of contraceptives. Walking them through these things helps them weigh the risks against the benefits.

References

Koh, H. (2014). The teen pregnancy prevention program: An evidence-based public health program model. Journal of Adolescent Health, 54(3), 1-2. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jadohealth.2013.12.031

Manlove, J., Fish, H., & Moore, K. A. (2015). Programs to improve adolescent sexual and reproductive health in the US: a review of the evidence. Adolescent Health, Medicine and Therapeutics, 6, 47–79. http://doi.org/10.2147/AHMT.S48054

Scribner-O’Pray, E. (2017). Beyond evidence-based interventions for teenage pregnancy prevention. Journal of Youth Development, 12(1), 126-135. doi: 10.5195/jyd.2017.486

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