The Symptoms and Consequences of Teenage Pregnancy

Teen pregnancies usually refer to pregnancies which occur between the ages of 13 and 18. The last couple of decades have recorded an alarming rise in teen pregnancies.

Psychologists and counselors offer various reasons for teen pregnancy. There are many health programs too, which include counseling, since the social and financial consequences of teen pregnancy can often be quite devastating for the young mother (or father) and the baby.

Pregnancy Symptoms Experienced by Teens

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Teen pregnancy symptoms are the same as in any other pregnancy but in many cases a pregnant teenager may not be aware of them, or may try to hide them. In case you are a teenager who feels that you are pregnant, or you know someone in that condition, here are a few tips.

  • A missed period is the first sign that you have conceived. However, some women still continue to have a short and scanty ‘mini period’ for a couple of months. But any such changes in your normal monthly periods could be a sign of pregnancy.
  • Some teenagers may experience sudden dizziness or even fainting spells. This is because pregnancy leads to certain changes in blood pressure, and may also be associated with low blood sugar.
  • Nausea and vomiting is another teenage pregnancy symptom, and usually occur a couple of weeks after conception, and may continue for about 8 weeks. While it generally happens in the mornings, it could also happen at any time of the day. Sometimes certain smells and even food odors may make you gag.
  • Your breasts may feel tender and swollen. Pregnancy also causes the areolas (the skin around the nipples) to become darker.
  • Pregnancy is accompanied by hormonal changes. This could cause mood swings or irritability, or frequent headaches.

  • The urge to urinate frequently is another symptom. This is again brought on by hormonal changes, while in later trimesters it is caused by the growing baby pressing against the bladder.

Some of the symptoms (like missed periods) are also occasionally caused by extreme activity or stress. So, it is best to take a pregnancy test, and even better to consult a doctor, so that you can take appropriate steps. This would mean first considering whether you would wish to bring the pregnancy to full term.

Teenage Pregnancy Consequences

There are serious consequences of teenage pregnancy.

  • The health risk is considered as the most serious of consequences of teenage pregnancy.Teen mothers often give birth to low weight or premature babies. The infants may also have serious physical complications like lung problems, brain hemorrhage, loss of vision, intestinal complications. Infant mortality is also higher. Coupled with this is the fact that teen mothers tend to have alcohol or drug abuse problems, and are not in a position to look after the baby.
  • Financial problems are another serious consequence of teenage pregnancy. The mother may be still in school and unable to support herself and her baby financially.

Teenage Pregnancy Reasons

While in some countries of Asia and Africa, early marriages are the major cause of teen pregnancies, according to psychologists, most teenage pregnancies occur as an accident, due to unsafe sex. Besides, many girls who have unhappy home lives end up having sex, either to get love or they feel that a baby will give them unconditional love.

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