Each year, almost 750,000 teenage women aged 15 19 become pregnant. The teenage pregnancy
rate in this country is at its lowest level in 30 years, down 36% since its peak in 1990. A growing
body of research suggests that both increased abstinence and changes in contraceptive practice
are responsible for recent declines in teenage pregnancy.1
• The teenage pregnancy rate among those who ever had intercourse declined 28% between
1990 and 2002.
• The teenage birthrate in 2002 was 30% lower than the peak rate of 61.8 births per 1,000
women, reached in 1991.
• Between 1988 and 2000, teenage pregnancy rates declined in every state and in the
District of Columbia.
• By 2002, the teenage abortion rate had dropped by 50% from its peak in 1988.
• From 1986 to 2002, the proportion of teenage pregnancies ending in abortion declined
more than one-quarter from 46% to 34% of pregnancies among 15 19-year-olds.
• Among black women aged 15 19, the nationwide pregnancy rate fell by 40% between
1990 and 2002.
• Among white teenagers, it declined by 34% during the same time period.
• Among Hispanic teenagers, who may be of any race, the pregnancy rate increased
slightly from 1991 1992, but by 2002 was 19% lower than the 1990 rate.
In general, states with the largest numbers of teenagers also had the greatest number of teenage
pregnancies. California reported the highest number of adolescent pregnancies (113,000),
followed by Texas, New York, Florida and Illinois (with about 37,000 80,000 each). The
smallest numbers of teenage pregnancies were in Vermont, North Dakota, Wyoming, South
Dakota and Alaska, all of which reported fewer than 2,000 pregnancies among women aged 15
• In 2000, teenage birthrates were highest in Mississippi, Texas, Arizona, Arkansas and
New Mexico. The states with the lowest teenage birthrates were New Hampshire,
Vermont, Massachusetts, North Dakota and Maine.
• Teenage abortion rates were highest...