Pediatricians Want to Give Girls Morning-After Pill Prescriptions 'Just in Case'

Say What!? 10

teensThere is no debating that teens today are exposed to much more then we ever were. The question is, however, shouldn't we impose some limits. Case in point: The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that docs treating teens write just-in-case prescriptions for the morning-after pill. I am a pretty liberal parent, but I even think this crosses the line. Giving girls what essentially boils down to a "get out of pregnancy" free card will definitely send the wrong message.

Look, I have no delusions about teenage chastity. Some may sport those purity rings but I assume that most high school age, hormonal kids are having sex or, at the very least, trying to. That's one thing that hasn't changed since the days of Fast Times at Ridgemont High. Yes, there are many unwanted and unplanned pregnancies among that group and they have a right to decide what ultimately happens to their bodies.

“Studies have shown that adolescents are more likely to use emergency contraception if it has been prescribed in advance of need,” the AAP said in a policy statement. “Despite significant declines over the past two decades, the United States continues to have teen birth rates that are significantly higher than other industrialized nations." But giving out morning-after pill like condoms doesn't teach these teens to be more responsible.

At the risk of sounding like a lame health class video, sex is a very serious thing and kids should take it seriously. I can't help but fear that sexually active teens will become a little more careless knowing that can just pop one of these pills the next day without even having a discussion with a parent or doctor. That's not to say they shouldn't have access to the morning after pill. They should. But they also need to understand the consequences of having unprotected sex go well beyond pregnancy. A lot of kids feel they are invincible when it comes to their health but there are a host of nasty STDs they can fall victim to. Kids need to wake up to the realities and the risks of having unprotected sex. Scared straight, so to speak. Having that little pill in their back pocket any time they need it won't do that.

Do you think teens should get "just-in-case" morning after pills?

Images via mike baird/Flickr

behavior, sex


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Doomy234 Doomy234

This sickens me. So instead of telling our kids to do the right thing and not have sex at a young age, or even telling them "if you're going to have sex, use a condom" we're just going to give them morning after pills so they can have irresponsible unprotected sex? I can understand doctors willingly giving prescriptions to teens who need it, but not as the ordinary every day contraception. Thats just wrong. If you're going to give them pills to prevent pregnancy why not just put them on the pill?!

Doomy234 Doomy234

Birth control pills, that is. Not morning-after.*

Autum... Autumnleaves87

I think giving teens access to EVERY form of protection against unwanted pregnancy is a smart decision.

Teens are going to have sex. Despite what you tell them Doomy.. and even if they use a condom, that is not always effective! Having access to the morning after pill could help them through that.

I'm all for education, but even the smartest and most educated people need a back up plan.

Austin Keenan

Any prescription should be up to the parents.    Keep your damn nose out of my business.   My kid = my business not yours.

SuzyB... SuzyBarno

I do totally see how a teen can think "well I have the morning after rx so even if we don't use a condom I can just go full it and take that to prevent a pregnancy". I know this because I said that once when I was 16 and under pressure from my bf. I did not get pregnant but I could have gotten an STD or pregnant. I don't think giving birth control is the right idea. I think parents need to have totally open conversations about sex and track down the boyfriends parents and talk with them about it too. Make sure everyone is on the same page. I mean parents almost need to have embarrassingly honest conversations with their teen kids.

nonmember avatar Becky

You know the countrys' moral standards are in the toilet when doctors want to give the morning after pill to teens. So what would you like to do about the epidemic of STD's and HIV since there are no vaccines for those? If parents would start taking responsibility for their children instead of ignoring them it MIGHT make a difference; but in this world of it's all about me it probably won't make any difference!!!

Amie Acosta

Uhm, I don't agree with this AT ALL. Let them either go to Planned Parenthood and get it there or pay the 45 dollars to buy it OTC. 

Rhianna Merideth

What's next? An emergency shot for the "clap"? Or at home aids tests just in case well then you're screwed anyways....

Deborah Haines

Parents need to step up and giving their children a reality check. Teens nowadays have no cares in the world, all they thing is that sex feels good and I want that high. Really? Parents need to get down and dirty and talk with their kids and not let them just go with it. Parents need to talk about STDs, HIV, HPV, and pregnancy. I'm sorry, but if a teen gets pregnant, guess what; cause and effect. You did it so you deal with it. I hate the 'get out of jail free' cards that people keep coming up with.

If you have to take birth control pills for reason, that's understandable, and if someone is raped, I understand using the morning after pill. These are special cases, I'm talking about the carefree teens who don't care.

Beth Miller

Parents should talk to their kids about sex, but most don't. That's we have sex ed, for kids whose parents won't or are embarrassed to talk about sex. I don't think this is a good idea, but those kids need someone to explain better exactly what can happen when they have sex and talk about birth control. It should start with parents, but it usually doesn't. Kids need help to understand and they need help to fight back against peer pressure, which is just as much of a problem as parents not talking about sex it is.

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