*The following is excerpted from an online article posted on CNN.
In the United States, teen-aged moms are increasingly rare. In 2016, the teen birth rate dropped 9% compared to the previous year, a new government report found. This record low for teens having babies continues a long-term trend.
The birth rate among teen girls has dropped 67% since 1991, according to the National Center for Health Statistics, which presented preliminary data for 2016 based on a majority (99.9%) of births.
In 2016, the number of US births totaled 3,941,109, a decline of 1% compared to 2015. The fertility rate of 62 births per 1,000 women is a record low for the nation.
The teen rate is a “phenomenal decline,” said Dr. Elise Berlan, a physician in the section of adolescent medicine at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. Berlan, who did not conduct this research, said the reason she’s so excited is “because we know that the vast majority of teen births are unintended.”
What’s fueling the declines?
“Data [from previous years] really suggests it is access to contraceptives and use of contraceptives that has really led to these kind of changes,” said Berlan, who noted that “most teens are using some form of birth control” and the top method is “the condom, followed by withdrawal and the pill.”
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