Adolescent Sexual Behaviors – Estimates and Trends (2000)


With U.S. teens having the highest rates of unintended pregnancy and abortions and also the highest incidence of STDs, adolescent social behavior have been monitored in order to provide them with targeted health promotion activities in an attempt to change these behaviors. Through national surveys such as the NSFG, the National Survey of Adolescent Males (NSAM) and the Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) to examine trends in sexual behaviors in different genders and ethnicity.

  • “We noted a significant decline (by 13 percentage points) in the use of oral contraceptives at last intercourse by currently sexually active women only in the NSFG (Table 5, page 162). Females in the YRBS showed a sim ilar, but nonsignificant, trend (by six percentage points). These findings are consistent with significant declines in the full NSFG sample of adolescents and in the full YRBS.” (Santelli et al., 2000, p. 161)
  • “Trends in reported condom use at last intercourse among sexually active youth were consistent across surveys (Table 5). Among males, significant increases were found for the NSAM (11 percentage points) and the YRBS (six percentage points); among YRBS females reporting their male partner’s use, there was a 12-percentage-point difference. A similar but nonsignificant trend was found among NSFG females. The YRBS, the NSAM and the NSFG have all shown increases in condom use in their full samples of adolescents.” (Santelli et al., 2000, p. 161-162)
  • “Data generally demonstrate comparable trends over time in key sexual behaviors among adolescents, but they show considerable variation in point estimates.” (Santelli et al., 2000, p. 162)

Citation: Santelli, J.S., Lindberg, L.D., Abma, J., McNeely, C.S., Resnick, M. (2000). Adolescent sexual behavior: Estimates and trends from four nationally representative surveys. Family Planning Perspectives. Vol. 32., No. 4. 156-194.

Link to article.

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