Getting pregnant at a young age has a series of health risks for the pregnant mother, the fetus in the womb, and those closest to her.
Pregnancy in adolescence usually occurs in women aged 15 to 19 years, or under 20 years. However, it is possible for girls under the age of 15 to become pregnant.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the causes of pregnancy at a young age can come from early marriage, lack of reproductive health information, to sexual violence. Getting pregnant at a young age has health, social, and economic risks or consequences.
Health risks of getting pregnant in adolescence
The health risks of being pregnant at a young age are vulnerable for women and the fetus in the womb, including:
- Limited health access
Pregnant in their teens often lack support from the closest people, including parents. This condition is prone to have an impact on the lack of access to health for pregnancy check-ups. Pregnancy care is important to monitor the health condition of pregnant women and fetuses in the womb, anticipate pregnancy complications, and fulfill pregnancy nutrition.
Without adequate nutrition from the intake of pregnant women, babies can be born with congenital diseases or birth defects.
- High blood pressure
Teenagers who are pregnant are more prone to developing high blood pressure or hypertension than women who are pregnant between the ages of 20 and 30. High blood pressure is the main cause of preeclampsia. This dangerous condition causes high urine protein levels, swollen face and hands, and damage to the vital organs of pregnant women.
- Infectious infection
Sexuality Adolescents who have sex during pregnancy without protection or condoms are also susceptible to sexually transmitted diseases. Sexually transmitted infections in pregnant women can cause uterine infections to cause birth defects.
- Babies born prematurely
Uncontrolled high blood pressure can also trigger complications for premature babies. Premature birth occurs when a baby is born before 37 weeks of gestation. The earlier the baby is born prematurely, the greater the risk of respiratory, digestive, vision, and cognitive problems.
- Babies born with low weight
Another danger of getting pregnant at a young age is that babies are born with low body weight. When born prematurely, babies usually have a below-normal weight. This condition requires intensive medical care such as the baby needs a breathing apparatus after birth.
Getting pregnant at a young age has the risk of causing pregnant women to experience depression during pregnancy and postpartum. Especially for teenagers who do not get support during pregnancy. They are usually afraid, isolated, and hopeless about the pregnancy. Depression not only disturbs the health of pregnant women but also interferes with the growth and development of the baby.
Signs of pregnancy
Teenagers who are pregnant usually experience several signs. Launching Healthline, here are some of them:
- Late menstruation
- Breasts become softer
- Nausea, usually in the morning
- Frequent vomiting
- Feel dizzy
- Wanna faint
- Weight gain
- Easy to get tired even though you don’t have much activity
- Enlarged belly
The signs of pregnancy above usually appear in the first weeks of pregnancy.