1.1 Background to the Study
A teenager, or teen, is a young person whose age falls within the range from (13-17years) Nigeria. They are called teenagers because their age number ends with “teen”. Usage by ordinary people varies, and also varies in different societies. Most societies traditionally had a formal ceremony to mark the change from childhood to adulthood. During puberty, rapid mental and physical development occurs. Adolescence is the name for this transition period from childhood to adulthood (Anderson, Dallal and Must, 2013).
Teenage is often used interchangeably with adolescence. World Health Organization – WHO (2012) opined that, it is the period between 10 and 19 years when the secondary sex characteristics appear. Turner and Helms (1993) reported that the teen years fall between the ages of 13 and 19 years. The issue of pregnancies among teenage girls seems to be one of the social problems facing not only Nigeria, but also several other nations of the world.
Pregnancy at whatever stage in life can be a life changing experience that cuts across boundaries of race, educational attainment and socio-economic status (Kost, Henshaw and Carlin, 2014). Motherhood places demands on one’s life which were hitherto non-existent prior to the birth of the woman. When a girl that should be in school becomes pregnant, her entire life could be completely altered as her hopes and aspirations could be shattered. Teenage parents according to Kost, Henshaw and Carlin (2014), are parents between the ages of 13 and 19 years. Maynard (1997) believe that teenage pregnancy is a delinquent behaviour resulting from stress, dislike, malice, boredom and unhappiness experienced by a teenage girl within her home environment. Other predisposing factors include alcoholism, drug addiction, and sexual promiscuity.
Teenage sexual activities in Nigeria also tend to be on the increase (Nwosu, 2015). A major consequence of these increase sexual activities among teenagers is out of wedlock pregnancies that may result in abortion, childbirth or even death. Teenage pregnancy is associated with numerous negative outcomes. When a teenager is pregnant, she is not only at an increase risk of complication related to pregnancy and childbirth but she had to face long term consequences such as physical, mental and social problems which have impact on her health. She will have a bad experience in her life that will deeply impact not only on herself but also her family and loved ones (Kost and Stanley, 2012).
Nowadays, teenage pregnancy has become a growing concern and therefore various causes of teenage pregnancy have become crucial. Teenage pregnancy refers to pregnancy that occurs in young girls, mostly in the range of age 13 to 19 years old (Darroch and Jacqueline, 2013) .
1.2 Statement of Problem
Most authors have linked poverty to teenage pregnancy and its subsequent motherhood. They see poverty as a cause at the same time an effect of teenage pregnancy. For instance, Keller, Hilton and Twumasi-Ankrah, (2015) opined that in rural communities, family financial exigencies and social custom induce girls to stay out of school and enter into early sexual relationships which lead them into getting pregnant at early stages of their lives thereby making them continue to be in the cycle of poverty. This presupposes that tackling teenage pregnancy would have a trickling down effects on poverty and vice-versa.
The percentage of teenage pregnancies in the society is growing at an alarming rate. It is perceived that lack of adequate knowledge about sex education to teenage girls make them to be sexually active which eventually leads to pregnancy. Teenage pregnancy has been found to have negative and long lasting social effects on the life of the adolescents. It is in the light of this that this study is carried out to examine the knowledge of the effects of teenage pregnancy among students of Ujoelen Grammer School, Ekpoma, Esan West Local Government.
1.3 Research Questions
- What are the effects of teenage pregnancy on the social well-being of the teenage girls?
- What are the effects of teenage pregnancy on the psychological well-being of the teenage girls?
- What extend do students of Ujoelen Grammer school know about the effects of teenage pregnancy?
1.4 Objectives of the Study
The objectives of the study are to;
- Determine the extent of the knowledge of students about teenage pregnancy.
- To know the effects of teenage pregnancy on the social well-being of the teenage students.
- To determine the effects of teenage pregnancy on the psychological well being of the teenage students.
1.5 Significance of Study
This study will enable the students of Ujoelen Grammer School to have a basic knowledge on the effect of unwanted pregnancy among the teenagers. It will also enable the students, the researcher and the health care institutions to know the social and psychological effect of teenage pregnancy on the students.
1.6 Scope of the Study
The research was carried out using teenage students of Ujoelen Grammer school. This school is located in Ujuelen in Ekpoma, Esan West Local Government Area of Edo State, Nigeria. The studenst recruited for the study are from JSS 1A,B,C to SS IIIA,B,C.
1.7 Research Hypothesis
- There are significant differences on the extent of the knowledge on the effect of teenage pregnancy among students of Ujoelen Grammer school, Ekpoma.
- There are significant difference on the effects of teenage pregnancy on the socio-psychological well-being of the teenage students of Ujuelen Grammer School, Ekpoma.
1.8 Operational Definition of Terms
Teenage: The age of a person that falls within the range from 13-19 year.
Pregnancy: A period from conception to the delivering of the fetus usually within 40 weeks (280 days) from the first day of the last menstrual period.
Teenage pregnancy:-This is pregnancy that occurs between ages 13-19 years.
Knowledge: Facts, information, and skills acquired through experience or education; the theoretical or practical understanding of a subject.
Effect: A change which is a result or consequence of an action or other cause
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