General purpose: To persuade
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Specific purpose: To persuade the Communications 111 class that teenage pregnancy, though declining in occurrence is still rampant among teens in the US and has unprecedented effects on the teens and to motivate them to enhance the fight against teen pregnancy.
The pattern of arrangement: Motivated Sequence
In the US, there was a steady decline in teenage pregnancy from 60 out of 1000 teenagers in 1991 to 40 out of 1000 teenagers in 2005 (Berne). Nonetheless, there was an increase up to 42 out of 1000 teenagers for two years consecutively from 2006 to 2007. The rates fell again to 39.1 out of 1000 cases in 2009 and further to 34.3 per 100 cases in 2010 (Health Communities). Despite this fall, about 1 million teenage pregnancies cases are still being reported annually in the US. An issue of concern is that of all births in the US today, 13% are teenage mothers (Health Communities). More so, there is a chance of up to 0.25 that a teenage mother will have another child in two years (Health Communities). Thus, teenage pregnancy is still an issue of concern, and we should rise to address it.
We all need to understand the major risks and consequences of teen pregnancy.
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There are health risks for both the mother and the baby.
- The mother may be at risk of pregnancy-induced hypertension, which may be occasioned by failure to receive timely prenatal care (MedlinePlus).
- The child, on the other hand, may be at risk of low birth weight and premature birth (MedlinePlus).
The case may even be worse if the high blood pressure combines with “excess protein in the urine, swelling of face and hands and organ damage” a condition called preeclampsia (Berne).
2. Teenage pregnancies may lead to school dropout.
- Teenage mothers have high school dropout rates, and about two-thirds of teenage mothers do not obtain high school diplomas (Health Communities).
- More so, teenage pregnancies are associated with low educational level, which influences earning potential (negatively) for teen fathers (Health Communities).
3. Teenage pregnancies also affect the income of mothers.
- A teenage mother is likely to have a low annual income (Health Communities). This leads to reliance on welfare at some points, and it has been noted this is likely to happen to about 85% of teenage mothers.
4. Teenage pregnancies are expensive to individuals and the government.
- The cost of teen pregnancies is estimated to be USD 7 billion annually (Health Communities). This results from lost tax revenue, the criminal justice system, child health, and foster care as well as public assistance.
- Other effects include risks of drug and substance abuse as well as emotional crisis.
We must eliminate cases of teenage pregnancy in the society
We, therefore, need to take actions to prevent further teenage pregnancies and promote the current downwards trends that the government has attained (Health communities).
The US government has made significant steps in dealing with the problem of teen pregnancies. Use of evidence-based intervention programs in a sustainable manner and sex education to the teens (Teen pregnancy).
There is a need to participate in the implementation of evidence-based and evidence-informed programs.
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Health experts recommend that teens should be provided with medically, accurate information that is guided by evidence to curb teen pregnancy (Berne). Secondly, we should participate in stakeholder education on the available strategies to avert teen pregnancies based on evidence, facts, and data (Teen Pregnancy Prevention 2010-2015).
We also have to participate in ensuring that teen pregnancies prevention programs are sustainable (Teen Pregnancy). Through advocacy for abstinence from sex or and consistent use of birth control measures, we will be able to participate in reducing teenage pregnancies in our communities (Berne).
In summary, teen pregnancy is rampant in the US; it has numerous effects and implications for both the mother and the child (Teen Pregnancy Prevention 2010-2015). However, although the statistics in the US indicate that it is declining, there is a need to ensure that it is pushed much lower. You and I have a role to play in this issue.
Berne, Carlson. Teen Pregnancy. New York: Green haven Press. Print.
CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention). Teen Pregnancy. 2012.
CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention). Teen Pregnancy Prevention 2010-2015.
Health Communities. Teen Pregnancy. 2012.
MedlinePlus. Teenage Pregnancy. 2011.