Canada: Fewer Teens Report Having Intercourse
August 22, 2008
Fewer Canadian teens ages 15-19 are reporting having sexual intercourse, bringing the rate down to 43 percent in 2005 from 47 percent in 1996-1997, according to Statistics Canada. Data for the study came from 4,500 respondents to the 1996-1997 National Population Health Survey and about 10,000 respondents to each of the 2003 and 2005 Canadian Community Health surveys.
Reported condom use for teens ages 15-17 the last time they had sex was about 81 percent, but that dropped to 70 percent for teens ages 18-19. Previous research has found similar declines in condom use with age and less use among those taking oral contraceptives, the study said. Condom use also tends to decline among couples in longer-term relations, Rotermann said.
"It's possible that youth between the ages of 18 and 19 are in longer-term relationships and therefore they perceive their risk for [STDs] to be lower, and so unfortunately they're not using condoms," Rotermann said.
Lalonde believes older teens out of school may not be getting the message about condoms, and said there is a need for a national initiative to promote sexual health.
08.20.2008; Lauren La Rose
This article was provided by U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update. Visit the CDC's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.