8888677771 | Teen Pregnancies: Survey Finds Ap 3rd In Teen Pregnancies | Visakhapatnam News

VISAKHAPATNAM: About 12.6 per cent of the young women aged 15-19 in Andhra Pradesh have already begun childbearing, according to the latest round of the national family health survey (NFHS-5). The state stood in third place among all the states as far as teen pregnancies are concerned.
According to this NFHS report, the proportion of women who have started childbearing rises sharply from 5 per cent at 17 years to 18 per cent among women aged 18 years. This further jumps to 31 per cent among women aged 19 years. This has been more prevalent among the oppressed and weaker sections of the society. The national average of childbearing among women aged 15-19 – that is, they have already had a live birth or are pregnant with their first child – is 6.8%.
The NFHS-5 data also revealed that nearly one-third of women (29.3%) aged 20-24 years married before reaching the age of 18 years in Andhra Pradesh. This has been higher than the all-India average of 23.3%. Also, in terms of rural-urban segregation in the state, rural areas had a higher number of cases with 32.9% than urban areas with 21.7%.
According to a study conducted by the Child Rights and You (CRY) NGO in 2022, child marriage is still regarded as an important custom for 52 per cent of parents and parents-in-law in Andhra Pradesh. Only 22 per cent parents and parents-in-law are aware of the negative consequences of child marriage.
Fear of girls eloping or having `love affair’ leading to premarital sex and pregnancy emerged as dominant reasons why parents prefer to marry off their daughters as soon as they reach puberty. Lower dowry, the patriarchal construct of ‘women’s honour’, etc. are also reasons behind high prevalence of child marriage, the study suggested.
Andhra Pradesh State Commission for Protection of Child Rights member Gondu Seetharam said that the commission has been conducting awareness sessions on the negative effects of child marriages.
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