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Abstinence And STD Prevention
Todayís world is full of worries and problems which did not affect teens a generation
ago. New problems keep appearing in todayís world, such as STDs, increased pregnancy
rates, and other factors facing teens who choose to have sex. Emotionally and physically
teens and getting less developed before having sex and are not prepared for the serious
problems which come along with their decision to have sex. No longer is it a matter
which will just go away if we ignore it, but teen health and the health of our society
depend on choices which todayís teens make regarding sex. With so many diseases and
problems facing todayís world, abstinence is the only way to protect ourselves.
Abstinence is a safe choice in preventing the possibility of pregnancy. One-tenth of
young women between the ages of 15 and 19 get pregnant every year, 83 percent of these
pregnancies are unwanted or unplanned. Half of the unmarried teens who get pregnant do
so within six months of their first sexual experience. In fact, between 1986 and 1990, teen
childbearing increased by 16 percent. Whatís worse, pregnant teenagers often donít see a
doctor until the time of delivery.
Another serious problem surrounding teen sexual intercourse is the
probability of AIDS and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Each year, three million
teens are infected with STDs. Among 14- to 20-year-olds, chlamydia is the most
common. It has no obvious symptoms, and can cause infertility if left untreated.
Another common disease is herpes, which causes sores and painful swelling of the
genitals. Its symptoms can be managed, but not cured. Fifteen percent of all teenage
girls carry the virus that causes genital warts, another common STD. Gonorrhea, not
uncommon in teens, is known to cause pelvic pain, discharge, and painful urination. It
may leave its victims sterile. Perhaps even more serious is the disease Syphilis, which
killed famous mobster Al Capone. It causes sores, rashes, brain and organ damage, and
death. It can also harm an unborn child. AIDS (Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome)
is a growing danger, and is by far the most serious sexually transmitted disease.
AIDS is the sixth leading cause of death among 15- to 24-year-olds. Cases among
teens have grown 62 percent in the past two years, and the number of teens with AIDS
doubles every 14 months. A fifth of all AIDS victims in this country today are in their
twenties, and since the disease takes two to ten years to develop, those victims contracted
it in their teenage years. Even scarier is that, according to a study of 19 universities, one
in 500 college students may carry the AIDS virus. With these frightening statistics, it's
easy to see why many teens are choosing not to have sex. Many bold teenagers think
they can totally avoid pregnancy and STDs by using various forms of contraceptives.
However, while it does lessen the chances of disease and unwanted pregnancy, birth
control is not always dependable.
Although sex my bring appeal to our generation, the best way to prevent teen
pregnancy and STDís is by practicing abstinence. Hopefully before any more people are
infected by some of these deadly diseases, kids will get the idea that being safe and
practicing abstinence is the best way to go.
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Midwifery, RTT, Prevention of HIVAIDS, Sexual health, Sex education, Sexually transmitted infection, Adolescent sexuality, Safe sex, Sexual intercourse, Reproductive health, Chlamydia infection, Herpes simplex
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