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Eight years earlier, the federally commissioned report "Kids Having Kids" also contained a similar finding, though it was buried: "Adolescent childbearers fare slightly better than later-childbearing counterparts in terms of their overall economic welfare." Pregnancy and giving birth significantly increases the chance that these mothers will become high school dropouts and as many as half have to go on welfare.
Many teen parents do not have the intellectual or emotional maturity that is needed to provide for another life.
Pregnant teenagers face many of the same pregnancy related issues as other women.
There are, however, additional concerns for those under 15 of age as they are less likely to be physically developed enough to sustain a healthy pregnancy or to give birth.
The children of teen mothers are more likely to be born prematurely with a low birth weight, predisposing them to many other lifelong conditions.
One study suggested that adolescent mothers are less likely to stimulate their infant through affectionate behaviors such as touch, smiling, and verbal communication, or to be sensitive and accepting toward his or her needs.
Poor academic performance in the children of teenage mothers has also been noted, with many of the children being held back a grade level, scoring lower on standardized tests, and/or failing to graduate from secondary school.
In a rural hospital in West Bengal, teenage mothers between 15 and 19 years old were more likely to have anemia, preterm delivery, and a baby with a lower birth weight than mothers between 20 and 24 years old.
For instance, long-term studies by Duke University economist V.Less than one third of teenage mothers receive any form of child support, vastly increasing the likelihood of turning to the government for assistance.