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Study Shows 26 Percent of U.S. Teenage Girls Have STD

LifeSiteNews.com

By Michael Baggot

ATLANTA, GA, March 13, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Twenty six percent of US teenage girls have contracted at least one of the four major sexually transmitted diseases, according to a study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released Tuesday.  The CDCP estimates that 3.2 million US teen girls have an STD.

The study examined the sexual behavior of 838 teenage girls, half of whom admitted to having sex during their teen years.  Of that half, 40 percent had contracted an STD.

Nearly half of the black teens tested had an STD, while 20 percent of the white teens were infected. 

Half of the tested teens who had had three or more partners were infected, compared to a 20 percent infection rate among those who had had only one sexual partner. 

Of the tested teens, 18 percent had human papilloma virus, or HPV, 4 percent had chlamydia, 2.5 percent had trichomoniasis, and 2 percent had genital herpes.

Dorothy Furgerson, medical director at Planned Parenthood Mar Monte, encouraged better sex education programs, "so that young people who decide to have sex do protect themselves against sexually transmitted infections."

Valerie Huber, executive director of the National Abstinence Education Association, however, pointed out, "Teens are erroneously taught that a condom makes sex safe. When we learn that one in four teen girls is infected with a sexually transmitted disease (STD), it becomes clear that the contraception-based approach taught in 75% of U.S. schools is failing young people."
 
"The CDC study shows that the sexual health of teens should be paramount. The risk-avoidance message of abstinence education should be the top public health priority in response to this new information," added Huber.

"Comprehensive" Sexual Education programs encourage condom use as a means of reducing STD infection. 

In question 28 of The Facts of Life, Brian Clowes, PhD, examines the ineffectiveness of condoms to prevent various STDs.  Clowes writes that many studies reporting on the effectiveness of condoms in preventing HIV penetration only take into account one of the four types of stress intercourse places upon the condom.  Clowes cites a 1992 Food and Drug Administration study that more accurately reproduced the effects of intercourse on condoms and revealed leakage of HIV-sized particles in one third of tested condoms. 

Clowes adds that condom breakage contributes to the spread of STDs.  In 1994, Contraceptive Technology, examining seven different studies, found that 2.5 percent of condoms burst. 

Clowes also notes that condoms do not prevent STDs that are spread through skin-to-skin contact, such as HVS.  Furthermore, both gonorrhea and herpes can be transmitted through oral sex. 

Since the increase in abstinence education over the last decade, the young, unmarried teen birth rate has declined 50 percent, noted the abstinence education organization Project Reality in its 2007 study.  (Charts illustrating these declines can be found by clicking here (http://www.projectreality.org/pdf/contentmgmt/1014_Teen_Birt... ) for age 10-14 chart and here {http://www.projectreality.org/pdf/contentmgmt/1517_Teen_Birt… ) for age 15-17 chart.)

Dr. Stan Weed of the Institute for Research and Evaluation in Salt Lake City released a 2007 study that revealed the superiority of abstinence education over "comprehensive" sexual education in preventing the negative consequences of pre-marital sex (http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2007_docs/CompSexEd.pdf). 

"Within the United States, sexual activity rates have been going down among teenagers for about the last 12 or 13 years, and that coincides with when the abstinence education started. Abortion, pregnancies and out of wedlock births rates have also been going down among teens during that same time period. However, pregnancy, abortion and out of wedlock births have been rising for the older age group, between 19-25, a group that has not been targeted by abstinence programs," Weed told LifeSiteNews.com.

Weed’s study also noted the emotional problems associated with the sexual promiscuity "comprehensive" sexual education promotes.  "Sexually active teens are more than twice as likely as virgin teens to be depressed or attempt suicide," the study notes.  Sexually active teens are also much more likely to suffer dating violence, sexual exploitation, or rape.

The study also points out that, in contrast to "comprehensive" sexual education programs, abstinence education, "emphasize principles of self-restraint, self-esteem, future goals, long-term commitment, and unselfishness in relationships, and teach healthy relationship skills, all of which support the formation of strong marriages and healthy families."

Learn about the National Abstinence Education Association:
www.abstinenceassociation.org

Learn more about Project Reality:
www.projectreality.org

See Related LifeSiteNews Coverage:

Analysis of US Government Data Shows Abstinence Education Coincides With Teen Birth Decline
http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2007/aug/07080312.html

"Comprehensive" Sex Education is Ineffective: Abstinence Works, Major National Study Shows
http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2007/jun/07061304.html

Abstinence Alone Protects Fully Against HIV, Ugandan First Lady Tells Youth
http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2006/dec/06120601.html

Bush: Abstinence Only 100 % Effective Means of Preventing Pregnancy, HIV, STDs
http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2006/jun/06062308.html

Abstinence Education Works - New Report Offers More Evidence
http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2004/dec/04121004.html

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