Young Girls and Contraception
It’s no secret that in order to have sex legally, you need to be at least 16 years of age. This age limit varies from country to country, but in the UK it’s 16. So why then can girls as young as 13 get contraception?
It is estimated that just 1% of girls aged 13-16 will conceive a child. It is also known that around half of these pregnancies will be terminated. Currently the UK has the worst underage pregnancy rating out of the whole of Europe. It comes in second after USA in worldwide standings. With children as young as 13 engaging in sexual activities, the worry about contraception is very real. Doctors by law are not allowed to prescribe contraception to people under the age of 16. If they did, it would be looked upon as encouraging an illegal activity. So where exactly are young girls getting contraception from?
Government Pushing for Contraception at School
Recently the government has backed a scheme where underage girls can have implants fitted or they can have contraception injections. Girls as young as 13, have been using these contraceptive measures without their parents even knowing about it. Needless to say, the parents have not been overjoyed by the news!
The implants can stay in place for up to 5 years. The procedure itself can be painful and uncomfortable; particularly if the girls haven’t yet had sex. Once fitted, it can be removed at any time and it will prevent pregnancy for up to 5 years.
The question is should you allow your underage child to have a procedure like this? Many argue that without the protection, more children will suffer from unwanted pregnancies. If they are going to do it anyway, isn’t it better that they are protected? There is divided opinion on the matter. It seems that while the minimum age limit to legally have sex is 16, there are many younger people having sex unprotected. So encouraging them to wear protection is certainly a good idea.