Gabrielle Falk

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    Teenage pregnancy in Sweden

    Gabriella Falk, Sweden

    Topic and problem: Teenage pregnancy rate in Sweden is low compared to other European countries. However abortion rates are high despite education in school about sexual and reproductive health (SRH) and access to youth clinics and subsidized contraceptives. To find reasons for this we conducted an interview-study with questions aimed at examine teenagers experiences with contraceptives and to explore the reasons behind their contraceptive choices. The participants attended an out-patient clinic.

    Methods: Twelve teenagers who had applied for induced abortion were interviewed three to four weeks after abortion. The interviews comprised open questions about contraceptive experiences focusing on hindrance for contraceptive use. Six topic questions were used with further exploring questions posed  when needed. Qualitative content analysis was resorted to.

    Results: One theme was identified:Struggling with feelings of uncertainty and patterns of behaviour. Three categories emerged from the analysis. Uncertainty dealt with decisions and behaviours that varied with time and between the different individuals. Factors that influence contraceptive use dealt with the persons that the participants had discussed contraceptives with, how they acquired knowledge about contraceptive use and the nature of their behaviour.  Anxiety dealt with the side effects of contraception

    and feelings of fear related to contraceptive use.

    Conclusion: The participants had feelings of uncertainty, anxiety and fear towards contraceptive use which led to non use and inconsistent use. They revealed insufficient knowledge about SRH at times. Guidance from health care providers and access to youth clinics varied and was sometimes unsatisfactory. Parents were supportive of contraceptive use but not active in the process of getting their child to initiate it. Friends and the Internet were the main sources for acquiring information that was not always correct

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    Gabrielle Falk, Division of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, Faculty of Health Sciences, Linköping University, Sweden

    Co-authors: A.B.Ivarsson, School of Health and Medical Sciences, Örebro University and J.Brynhildsen,

    Faculty of Health Sciences, Linköping University, Sweden

    Topic and problem: Teenage pregnancy rate in Sweden is low compared to other European countries. However abortion rates are high despite education in school about sexual and reproductive health (SRH) and access to youth clinics and subsidized contraceptives. To find reasons for this we conducted an interview-study with questions aimed at examine teenagers experiences with contraceptives and to explore the reasons behind their contraceptive choices. The participants attended an out-patient clinic.

    Methods: Twelve teenagers who had applied for induced abortion were interviewed three to four weeks after abortion. The interviews comprised open questions about contraceptive experiences focusing on hindrance for contraceptive use. Six topic questions were used with further exploring questions posed when needed. Qualitative content analysis was resorted to.

    Results:One theme was identified:Struggling with feelings of uncertainty and patterns of behaviour. Three categories emerged from the analysis. Uncertainty dealt with decisions and behaviours that varied with time and between the different individuals. Factors that influence contraceptive use dealt with the persons that the participants had discussed contraceptives with, how they acquired knowledge about contraceptive use and the nature of their behaviour.  Anxiety dealt with the side effects of contraception and feelings of fear related to contraceptive use.

    Conclusion: The participants had feelings of uncertainty, anxiety and fear towards contraceptive use which led to non use and inconsistent use. They revealed insufficient knowledge about SRH at times. Guidance from health care providers and access to youth clinics varied and was sometimes unsatisfactory. Parents were supportive of contraceptive use but not active in the process of initiate it. Friends and the Internet were the main sources for acquiring information that was not always correct.