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Document Type
Comparative Reports
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Recommended Citation
Kothari, Monica T., Shanxiao Wang, Sara K. Head, and Noureddine Abderrahim. 2012. Trends in Adolescent Reproductive and Sexual Behaviors. DHS Comparative Reports No. 29. Calverton, Maryland, USA: ICF International.
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Publication Date
September 2012
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This report discusses the current status and trends over time of key indicators relevant to adolescent sexual and reproductive health using data from 41 countries from surveys conducted between 1990 and 2011. Findings indicate a number of demographic shifts which may affect adolescent lives. The proportion of adolescents’ age 15-19 living in rural areas has declined in more than half of the countries surveyed. The proportion of women with no education continues to be greater than that of men, especially in sub-Saharan Africa and South/Southeast Asia. The percentage of women currently working is decreasing in the majority of countries while the percentage of men currently working is increasing. Less than one-third of adolescent women and less than 3 percent of adolescent men are married by age 15 in most countries. The proportion of adolescent women who report having sexual intercourse in the past 12 months has increased in more than half of the countries surveyed. Sex with multiple partners and/or nonmarital or noncohabiting partners is greater in nearly every instance for men than for women. Condom use and other contraceptive use has not changed substantially over time. In the majority of countries, there is a slight decline in the proportion of adolescent women who have ever been pregnant. More young women have received antenatal care and assistance from a skilled provider at delivery. The results of the report illustrate the need for targeted efforts to improve adolescents’ sexual and reproductive health and contributing factors.


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