Teen Pregnancy Risk Factors

Hispanic teenager crying and holding pregnancy test in bathroom
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Quick Links: Troubled Teens | Quiz: Is Your Teen At-Risk?

For parents of teenage girls, concerns about pregnancy are common. There is good reason for concern as at current rates about one-third of teen girls will become pregnant. It helps to know the individual, social and family risk factors that can increase the likelihood of a teen becoming pregnant. Here is a list of teen pregnancy risk factors:

Individual Risk Factors

  • Drug and alcohol use
  • Lack of knowledge about sex or contraception
  • Lack of goals for the future
  • Low self-esteem
  • Poor school performance
  • Having sex at a young age
  • Being the victim of sexual abuse
  • Negative attitude towards using contraception
  • Ambivalence about having a child

Social Risk Factors

  • Pressure from peers to have sex
  • Dating at an early age
  • Dating older guys
  • Friends who are sexually active
  • Poor peer relationships 

Family Risk Factors

  • Poor parental supervision
  • Limited communication between parents and teen
  • Negative family interactions
  • Single-parent families
  • Significant unresolved conflict between family members
  • Family history of teenage pregnancies 

Experts agree - one of the most effective ways to prevent teen pregnancy is to make sure teens are well informed. Talk to your teen about sex, contraception, peer pressure and thinking about the consequences of their actions. For more information on teens and pregnancy, read our article on how to help prevent teen pregnancy.

Quick Links: Troubled Teens | Quiz: Is Your Teen At-Risk?


Women's Health Queensland Wide, Southeastern Idaho District Health Department

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