Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Plunge in Teen Birth Rate

Teen births were not a problem in 1960. They were the norm. For every 1,000 women aged 15 to 19 in 1960, fully 89.1 babies were born. Today, there are only 26.6 babies born for every 1,000 women aged 15 to 19—a 70 percent decline. The overall birth rate in 2013 (62.9 births per 1,000 women aged 15 to 44) is lower than the teen birth rate of 1960.

Teen births became a problem as marriage became less important. In 1960, half of women were married by age 20.3. Most "teen" births were to married women. Today, the median age at first marriage is 26.6 and most teen births are to single mothers.

Source: National Center for Health Statistics, National and State Patterns of Teen Birth in the United States, 1940-2013

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