Childrens Report Card

Sacramento County Childrens Coalition

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Adolescent Health

The risks associated with sexual behaviors of teens – namely teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases – have lifelong impacts. Sacramento County reports much higher rates of sexually transmitted diseases among its 15-24 year old population than California overall, and there has been a steady increase in the case rates between 2007 and 2011. Teen birth rates were consistently lower than California over the last decade, but currently the teen birth rates for California and Sacramento are the same.

Birth Rates

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Why is this important?

  • Researchers calculate that poor and low-income teens- who make up approximately 40% of the adolescent population- account for 83% of teens who give birth and 85% of those who become an unmarried parent.
  • Adolescents who become mothers tend to exhibit poorer psychological functioning, lower levels of educational attainment and high school completion, more single parenthood and less stable employment than those with similar background who postpone childbirth.
  • 70% of teen mothers drop out of high school, making pregnancy the primary reason young women drop out early.
  • Research shows that children of teenage mothers experience poverty at nearly twice the rate for all children; suffer higher rates of abuse and neglect; experience higher rates of early sexual activity; and more commonly end up in foster care.
  • Infants born to teen mothers are more likely to be low birth weight, which is associated with numerous health problems including blindness, deafness, chronic respiratory problems, mental retardation, dyslexia and mental illness.

How are we doing?

  • 1,457 children were born to teen mothers (15-19) in Sacramento County in 2011, which accounted for 7.2% of all live births.
  • The teen birth rate is decreasing and remains reflective of statewide teen birth rates.
  • Birth rates increase throughout the teen years, with most births being to 18-19 year old mothers.

Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD)

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Why is this important?

  • Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) can have serious, long-term, and even permanent consequences.  STDs can cause infertility, chronic pain, poor pregnancy outcomes, cervical cancer, and death.
  • Without regular screening, infections often go undetected leading to infection of the uterus known as pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). Women with PID can develop serious medical consequences such as infertility, ectopic pregnancy or chronic pelvic pain.

How are we doing?

  • Rates of chlamydia and gonorrhea in Sacramento County remain significantly higher than the State.
  • The chlamydia rate for women age 15-24 is more than 1.5 times higher in Sacramento County than throughout the State.
  • The gonorrhea rate for women the same age is 2.5 times higher in Sacramento County than California overall.
  • Among young women, African Americans have a chlamydia rate that is 8 times greater than whites.

Data Source: California Department of Public Health

Last Updated on Friday, 28 June 2013 18:07