Birth Control for Teenagers
The term birth control is generally defined as the “deliberate prevention of pregnancy using any of several methods” (“Birth Control”). It is sometimes referred to as contraception (“Birth Control”). A deeper view of the term would reveal that it ranges from the most popular, which is the pills, up to the traditional, which is the method of abstinence (Avert. org). Its definition alone does not prescribe anything about the age group as to whom this should be administered. Recent studies would place better light on the administration of birth control for teenagers as early as their age and the benefits would bounce back on to them.
Likewise, the purpose of birth control is not the prevention of pregnancy alone but also includes health safety reasons and for medical purposes. It serves as a means of preventing the spread of HIV diseases among teenagers who are especially at risk for unprotected sexual intercourse. Moreover, pills, as one of the methods for birth control, are sometimes prescribed by doctors for “medical reasons, such as excessively heavy periods, severe menstrual cramps, or acne” (Greenfield).
These purposes stated above places birth control means with a lot of uses and does not solely mean the prevention of pregnancy, as it is commonly referred to. The benefits of providing birth control for teenagers exceed the moral speculations attached to it. The speculations and allegations of the harm that birth control would bring would certainly place the teenagers at a very disadvantaged position. A primary benefit of birth control being given to teenagers is that it would increase their awareness at a very early age.
Awareness of the birth control methods through proper education is not a means of preparing them to have sex. Rather, it is a means of preparing them to live healthy and responsible teenage lives. This would enable them to instill a sense of heightened awareness before they decide to engage in sex. The act of engaging into sexual intercourse by teenagers could not be avoided because of the stage of puberty they are going through. This is especially true with teenagers with teenagers with weak social support groups.
Likewise, the awareness they receive at an early age would become a tool they could use to decide whether they would want to engage in sexual intercourse or not. With the use of the information they are properly provided, they would have the chance to enhance their decision-making skills and would give the chance to make informed decisions. In addition to an informed judgment, birth control would prevent unwanted pregnancies and would reduce the number of teenage parents. This would provide a great benefit for the USA in relation to the latest statistics on teenage pregnancies.
According to the report, “The United States has the highest rates of teen pregnancy and births in the western industrialized world. Teen pregnancy costs the United States at least $9 billion annually” (Teenpregnancy. org). With the alarming rate of teenage pregnancies today, it is best to mitigate the impact of such and help these teenagers as early as possible. It should be taken into account that the introduction of birth control to teenagers should be accompanied by several other factors for it to be considered as a successful one.
First, it should have with it the proper information as stated earlier. Factors that should be considered when making the awareness campaign would have to be that it contains the proper use of such, its importance especially to the teenage group, the purpose behind it, and the persons or organizations to whom teenagers could talk to about this. It should be clearly shown that the purpose for giving them birth control is not to persuade them into having teenage sex. Rather, it is to prepare them and inform them about the risks and importance of planning for their future.
Second, the important social support groups should constantly give teenagers with advice with regard to sensitive issues related to birth control. They would serve as the ones who would reinforce the values laid down by proper information dissemination. Third, trust should be given by parents to their children when it comes to birth control. Along with trust should be the constant reminder of the things they need to do. More often than not, barriers to communication between the parents and the teenagers result to disagreements between the two and would even bring them dissatisfaction and rebellion.
There is nothing wrong with teenagers receiving birth control especially so that abstinence is a form that is advocated by both religious and civic groups and is included in the list of birth control methods. This brings further light to the fact that birth control does not enhance the sexual activity of teenagers. Being the most vulnerable of them all, the opportunity to be protected, educated, and provided with birth control methods should never be taken away from them. It is a right which should be given to all women and men alike and to all age groups. Works Cited Avert. org.
Birth Control and Contraception for Teenagers. 26 June 2007. Avert. 22 August 2008 [http://www. avert. org/cpills. htm]. “Birth Control. ” In Microsoft® Student 2007 [DVD]. Redmond, WA: Microsoft Corporation, 2006. Greenfield, Marjorie. Myths and Realities about Giving the Pill to Preteens, Teens. 2 August 2008. The Dr. Spock Company. 22 August 2008 [http://www. drspock. com/article/0,1510,6127,00. html]. Teenpregnancy. org. General Facts and Stats. November 2006. The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy. 22 August 2008 [http://www. teenpregnancy. org/resources/data/genlfact. asp].