Exploring the enablers of teenage pregnancy in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA): a scoping literature review

Simwanza, N.R., Kalungwe, M., Nyashanu, M. ORCID: 0000-0002-9231-0393, Karonga, T. and Ekpenyong, M.S., 2022. Exploring the enablers of teenage pregnancy in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA): a scoping literature review. International Journal of Pregnancy and Child Birth, 8 (3), pp. 80-85. ISSN 2574-9889

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Evidence from sub-Saharan Africa indicates that 35 percent of pregnancies among 15-19-year (s)-olds were unplanned, unwanted, or untimed and that the teenagers’ relationships were unstable. Teenage pregnancy is a global problem especially in developing countries. Teenage pregnancy is associated with several social issues: poverty, low education levels, and the lack of awareness about sex and pregnancy prevention. The contributing factors for teenage pregnancy are multiple and complex categorised as socio-demographic, familial, cultural, and reproductive behaviour. Different literature reported that factors associated with teenage pregnancy include living in rural areas, not attending school, early marriage, lack of communication between parents and adolescents about sexual and reproductive health (SRH) issues, educational level of the teenagers and family history of teenage pregnancy.

A scoping review was conducted from February 2021 to August 2021 using the following specific subject databases: Google scholar, PubMed, EBSCOhost, and research gate. Special attention was paid to keywords during navigation to ensure consistency of searches in each database. English language, studies conducted in sub-Sahara Africa and articles published in the last 10 years (2011–2021), were the three limiters applied in the four databases. The researchers identified eight themes for inclusion in the findings. The themes fell into three major categories: individual related factors, family related factors and external factors. These themes reflect factors associated with teenage pregnancy. The review revealed that there are several risk factors that lead to teenage pregnancy. Therefore, there is urgency for strategic interventions aimed at improving teenage pregnancy through female education and sexual and reproductive health education must also be introduced or reinforced in schools. Policy makers, community leaders and school curriculum can act towards raising the age for marriage to after 20 years and make the methods of contraception accessible to teenagers. Qualitative techniques like focus group discussions in communities could be helpful in reflecting on the root cause of the problem.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: International Journal of Pregnancy and Child Birth
Creators: Simwanza, N.R., Kalungwe, M., Nyashanu, M., Karonga, T. and Ekpenyong, M.S.
Publisher: MedCrave Group
Date: 19 August 2022
Volume: 8
Number: 3
ISSN: 2574-9889
Rights: ©2022 niza et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and build upon your work non-commercially
Divisions: Schools > School of Social Sciences
Record created by: Laura Ward
Date Added: 17 Feb 2023 10:05
Last Modified: 17 Feb 2023 10:05
URI: https://irep.ntu.ac.uk/id/eprint/48337

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