Teen Pregnancy and Its Effects to Mental Health

It is reported that teen pregnancies in the country have been declining since 1991. Birth rate among teenagers aged 15 to 17 years old decreased by 7% and 4% among 18 to 19 years old. Although there is no solid evidence on why this came about, it is assumed that teenagers choose to abstain from sexual activities.   

This is evidently good news, however, the country still ranks as one of the highest teen pregnancy rates among first world nations. It is still considered an alarming reality because it greatly affects the physical and mental health of expectant mothers.

What are the mental health issues caused by teen pregnancy?

Leading medical professionals all agree that being pregnant at a young age poses threats not just to the physical well-being of the mothers but also to their mental health. The responsibilities and the burden of having a child lie heavily on them for they need to look after not just their overall health but also of their babies.

1. Guilt

It is never easy on the part of teenagers to open up their pregnancies to their parents. They know that telling them this news will cause them pain and disappointment. The guilt they feel inside of failing their families causes them to resort to abortion or running away.

Guilt is not the easiest feeling to deal with. It slowly creeps into your conscience until you will gain the courage to tell the truth. Many teenage mothers who bravely face their families still feel very much guilty even after many years.

2. Loneliness

Based on studies 8 out of 10 teenage fathers do not marry the mother of their child. Young women are left to face all the criticisms and judgments by other people including their families. Even if their families are being supportive, the feeling of abandonment from someone you trust becomes the cause of extreme loneliness.

Young mothers need all the support and guidance when expecting. It is not just about taking care of their body but also to look after their mental health. They need assurance that even without a partner, there are people who will help them.

3. Anxiety

Young mothers tend to be worried about how they can raise their children. It is not easy for them to look for a job or to continue their studies. Others feel guilty enough not to bother their own families in looking after them and their children.

Raising children needs a substantial amount of money from prenatal checkups to growing up years. They demand time and money to be able to raise them comfortably. It is no wonder that young mothers succumb to anxiety and unending worry on how to raise them well.

4. Depression

Along with anxiety and loneliness, it is possible that then pregnancy can cause young mothers to be depressed about their situation. Without any experiences of raising a child, they constantly worry and lose thoughts on how they can survive. They become easy targets for depression.  

Many teenagers do not see their teen pregnancy as a blessing but they perceive it as a hindrance to their plans, future and youth. Not being able to enjoy their younger years makes them hate themselves more and more. They feel hopeless and a failure.

5. Discrimination

Until to this day, teen pregnancy is frowned upon by many. It always boils down to teenagers being stubborn and rebellious. Parents, even if they have done their best in raising their children, are judged for not being strict enough to keep their children away from bad influences.

Society likes to point fingers on whom to blame in teen pregnancy. They tend to overlook the fact that these teenagers need help and support. They are the subject of every gossip in the community and even become the basis on what should not be done by teenagers.

How to handle teenage pregnancy?

Being a young mother will always be surrounded with challenges and problems. It will never be as easy and inspiring as what the movies present. There will be humps and bumps along the road but it does not mean that it will be the end of the journey.

Teen pregnancy is a social crisis that not all people know how to cope and handle well. It asks for maturity and understanding of the situation. Young mothers are vulnerable and they need support by the family and the community.

They need people who will accept and embrace their situation without questions. It is healthy for them to join groups that help young mothers to face this challenging time, to guide them on how to be a good mother even at a young age.

Young mothers who manifest signs of mental health problems are required to seek medical help from qualified therapists and psychologists. It is helpful if they can attend therapy near me and counseling sessions for them to see the significance of their new role.

Mindshift Psychological Services provide guidance and intervention on teen pregnancy. Teenagers, who are experiencing severe feelings of loneliness and anxiety, may be helped with their Depression Therapy near me. If they feel that they need to be counselled all the time while pregnant, they can also ask for their Psychotherapy for Individuals.

You may schedule for an appointment through their website or contact them at (714) 584-9700.

Teen pregnancy is not a vicious crime but it is an unexpected gift that can eventually be the source of joy for everyone.