Condoms Help Prevent More Than Teen Pregnancy

When it comes to safe sex, it is important for sexually active teens to realize that condoms help prevent more than teen pregnancy. There are many risks teens take when they have unprotected sex including unintended pregnancy as well as sexually transmitted diseases.

Based on the history of the condom, this prevention device has been used during sexual intercourse to prevent sexually transmitted infections for longer than it has been used to prevent unwanted pregnancy. In fact, the condom has been used to prevent STIs and STDs since the 16th century. It was later in the 18th century actively used to prevent unintended pregnancy as well. According to many studies on the teenage perception of teen pregnancy rates and STDs, more teens are scared of the possibility of becoming pregnant or getting another person pregnant than they are concerned with contracting or spreading STIs. Because of this underestimation about the realities of the risks of unprotected sex, it is important for teens to realize that condoms help prevent more than teen pregnancy and should be used each and every time they have sex with another partner to prevent both teen pregnancy as well as STIs.

Condom Effectiveness:

When it comes to condom use, for those who use the method of protection against unintended pregnancy, only two out of 100 women couples will end up pregnant after a year’s usage. However, about 18 out of 100 couples will end up pregnant in the course of a year if the condoms are not used properly. Most of the errors encountered with improper condom usage include the 40 percent of men that reported they did not leave enough room at the tip of the condom to accommodate for the ejaculate usage. There are also cases where the condom is faulty to begin with but used anyway. The actual breakage rate of condoms is only at about two per 100 condoms if they are used correctly.

When it comes to using condoms to prevent STDs, they do help prevent any STDs like herpes, HIV, bacterial infections, viral infections and more. When condoms were used to prevent HIV among couples where one partner had HIV, only two percent of infection occurred.  It is important, however, for sexually active teens and adults to keep in mind that condoms are only effective in helping to prevent STD transmission during sexual intercourse. Other types of sexual contact can also lead to STD and STI transmission.

While some abstinence-only programs, condom use is not encouraged since the program teachers are focusing on preventing unintended pregnancy and the spread of STDs through abstaining from sexual intercourse and other sex acts altogether. This is why many teens and even adults do not properly know how to use a condom and end  up in the high percentage of condom users that find the condom broken at the end of intercourse, which leads to an increased risk in pregnancy as well as increased chances of STDs.

This is why it is important for parents to talk to their children about safe sex, whether they think their teen is having sexual relations or not. Learning how to effectively use a condom can not only cut down on the teen pregnancy rate, but it can also assist in reducing the spread of STDs and STIs among teens and adults.

Because condoms help prevent more than teen pregnancy, even teens who are on a hormonal method of birth control like the pill or the IUD, it is important to still use condoms to help prevent the transmission of STDs. There are a few myths about condom use as well. Some believe that double bagging (using more than one condom at a time) will help better protect against STDs and unintended pregnancy. This is not necessarily true unless there is a defect with one of the condoms. However, condoms that are at risk for defects (old, exposed to water or other elements) shouldn’t be used in the first place. Other condom myths surrounding double bagging indicate that this practice might actually cause the condom to break, which is also not true. There is no statistical evidence to support this.

Simply using condoms correctly, and teaching your teens how to properly use a condom in order to effectively prevent against STDs and teen pregnancy is the best way to practice safe sex.


Teen Suicide

Finding out your pregnant as a teenager can feel disastrous. Suddenly you may think your future plans are gone. You may even have thoughts of suicide. Here are some ideas of what you should do if you find yourself pregnant and suicidal.

First of all, any depression, whether or not it is associated with your pregnancy, should be addressed. However, with pregnancy, your mood swings can go crazy as your hormones change in preparation for having a baby. In fact, almost 20 percent of women will experience some from of depression while pregnant with 10 percent of these women experiencing major depression. Any depression, but especially major depression can lead to suicidal tendencies. If you were prone to depression before getting pregnant, you are more likely to experience depression while pregnant.

But as mentioned above, sometimes your hormones will bring on the emotional distress or even depression. If your mood swings cause you to get depressed or feel down enough to think about suicide, you need to do something soon. Getting help is so important! You not only have to think about yourself now, but the baby inside of you. Here are a few places to get help: 

  • Your family 
  • Your doctor 
  • Your local hospital 
  • A counselor (school counselors can help you find the right kind of counselor) 
  • Friends 
  • A religious advisor 
  • Your community health center

Treating depression in pregnancy can be hard as the medications available may hurt the baby. There has not been a lot of research done in this area as even those promoting research are not sure if the baby would be harmed during the research. However, check with your local hospital or community health center for information concerning women who have been depressed and pregnant and see if they have any resources or can point you in the right direction. This information can point you in the direction of getting the medical and emotional help you need.

Interestingly enough, some professionals have found a connection between pregnancy and low suicide rates. For example between 1990 and 1993, 315 New York women committed suicide. Only 6 of these women were pregnant. Some professionals believe a increase of chemical in the brain that is linked to pregnancy, serotonin, helps women who are pregnancy not act on their suicidal tendencies, even if they are experiencing depression.

A final thought: there is also a connection between suicide and postpartum depression. So again, if you are feeling down and thinking about suicide after you have the baby, get help from any of the above outlets as soon as possible. Keeping yourself emotionally and physically healthy can help you get on with your future plans.

Teen Suicide Sources:

  • Family Doctor, “Pregnancy: Taking Care of You andYour Baby” [online].
  •, “Major Depression During Conception and Pregnancy: A Guide for Patients and Families” [pdf online].
  • Pshchology Today, By Dinha Kaplan, “Is Pregnancy a Suicide Shield? Pregnancy may be proof against depression” [online].

Click the link for more information on teen suicide.

Teen Depression

Finding out your pregnant as a teen can be one of the scariest moments in your life. Many teens find themselves emotional crazy, this can lead to teen depression. Teen depression can be prevented and treated, keep reading for help with teen depression.

Getting pregnant can be a really happy time for many women. However, getting pregnant as a teenager can unexpectedly make all your hopes and dreams seem unreachable. Suddenly that dance you were hoping to go to does not seem as important. Or additional education may not even be a possibility as you struggle to graduate from high school. And how do you tell your parents you are pregnant? Plus what do you do about the baby? These emotionally frustrating problems are only aggravated by the many physical and hormonal changes you can go through being pregnant.

But many women and many teenagers do get depression during pregnancy. Understanding depression is important as then you can take the necessary steps to get treatment and counseling. So how do you tell if your feeling depressed or if your feelings are just a normal part of pregnancy? Here are some signs of depression: 

If you feel down for two weeks or more 

  • If you are not interested in things you used to be interested such as fun activities or schoolwork 
  • If you feel extremely guilty about getting pregnant 
  • If you appetite suddenly changes on the extreme, either you do not want to eat, or suddenly you eat and eat and eat 
  • You cannot sleep 
  • You have crazy mood swings 
  • And finally, any thoughts of suicide

These signs can help you determine if you are feeling depressed. Anything that you feel that seems to be on the extreme is not a good emotion. You need to go to your doctor to determine the best ways of treated your depression. Treating teen depression, like treating any disease, can be different due to the fact that you are pregnant and cannot always take the same medications as when you are not pregnant. Getting support is so important however, to help you combat your sad and frustrated feelings. Getting support from other teenagers who are going through the same thing as you are can be a wonderful bonus whether or not you are depressed and can help you get through your teen pregnancy easier.

An additional note: the father of the baby may or may not be involved. Watch for signs that he is depressed as well. Finding out you are going to be a teen father can be an emotional upheaval.

Understand that teenage depression can last after pregnancy. So do not stop treatment after having the baby is the depression seems to continue. You are now in charge of another life. Getting care for both you and the baby is very important. Keeping your emotional, social, and physical well-being healthy is a vital part of taking care of this new life.

Teen Depression Sources

  • American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, “When Children Have Children” [online].
  •, “Depression During Pregnancy” [online].
  • Teens Health, “Having a Healthy Pregnancy” [online].
  • University of Michigan Depression Center, “Depression in Pregnancy” [online].

Click this link to get more on : Teen Depression