Teens who received free contraception and were educated about the pros and cons of various birth control methods were dramatically less likely to get pregnant, give birth or get an abortion compared with other sexually active teens, according to a new study.
Teen mothers who eat breakfast have healthier weights and snacking habits and may influence healthy eating habits among their children, says a recent study by obesity prevention expert Debra Haire-Joshu, PhD, professor at the Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis. “It’s important to look at dietary patterns among postpartum teens to help reduce weight retention and prevent intergenerational obesity,” she says. “Overall, breakfast consumption among postpartum teens is low and interventions are needed to encourage breakfast consumption among teen mothers.”
High school students who smoke, drink, use drugs or engage in other risky behaviors also are more likely to become pregnant or to impregnate a sexual partner, according to new research from psychiatry researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. And it wasn’t just one pregnancy. Those involved in risky activities had an even greater risk for multiple pregnancies.
A study of Missouri girls in foster care found that about half of them had become pregnant or had given birth by age 19. To address this startling statistic, Washington University is launching a regional pregnancy prevention program for this high-risk population. The project will serve an estimated 600 teens in foster care in the St. Louis region.