Pregnant Teens Prone to Substance Abuse, Report Finds

Pregnant Teens Prone to Substance Abuse, Report FindsTeenagers face many challenges today, including an increasing number who abuse drugs. Statistically, teens who come from unstable homes are at greater risk of indulging in illicit drugs and sexual promiscuity. Research has now shown that pregnant teens also are at a greater risk of using illicit drugs. About half of the pregnant teens in abuse programs said they used alcohol and/or drugs at least a month before entering the program.Many of these teens aren’t just using substances at weekend parties; about one in five teens who becomes pregnant uses drugs and/or alcohol on a daily basis. Most pregnant teens say marijuana is the most commonly used substance. Oddly, about twice the numbers of teens who become pregnant use methamphetamines than teens who do not become pregnant.

According to a report from the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, between 2007 and 2010, 57,000 females between the age of 12 and 19 entered substance abuse treatment programs. About 4 percent of those women were pregnant. Those pregnant teens are three times more likely to be on public assistance programs.

Teenage pregnancy coupled with drug use leads to long-term consequences, not only for the mother, but for the child as well. In the short-term, young women are at greater risk for complications related to pregnancy and childbirth. With drug use, the babies born to these mothers also have developmental issues and are often born addicted.

About 53 percent of pregnant teens are white, 19 percent Hispanic and 17 percent black. Nearly three percent of these girls are between the ages of 12 and 14. About 34 percent of them have no income.

Posted on December 17th, 2013
Posted in Substance Abuse

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