Adolescent Sexual Health Report
Chippewa County, Minnesota

Pregnancy and Birth

From 1990 to 2019, the birth rate among adolescents aged 15-19 in the United States dropped 73%, reaching a record low of 16.7 births per 1,000 (2). The decline in adolescent pregnancy over the past two decades is likely due to a combination of improved contraceptive use and delayed initiation of sexual activity (3). More recent declines have mainly been driven by increased use of highly effective contraceptive methods (IUDs and implants) and dual methods (4,5).

Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs)

Adolescents experience a disproportionately high rate of sexually transmitted infections. This is likely due to a combination of: biological, behavioral, and cultural factors; barriers to accessing health services such as transportation, cost, and concerns about confidentiality; and peer and media influences (12).

Although they account for only 6.5% of the population in Minnesota, adolescents age 15-19 accounted for (25.2)% of the chlamydia and 16.3% of the gonorrhea cases in Minnesota in 2020 (9,11).

Note: In 2010, the Minnesota Student Survey (MSS) stopped surveying 12th graders and in 2013 the MSS started surveying 11th graders instead and kept 9th graders as a trend.

Prenatal Care and Low Birth Weight

Access to prenatal care and support from family members may be the most important factor for improving the birth outcomes for adolescent mothers (23). 

Infants born at a low birth weight are more likely than infants born at a normal weight to die within the first year of life. There are many factors associated with giving birth to a low birth weight infant, such as maternal age, health, nutrition, access to prenatal care, education level and contact with alcohol, cigarette smoke and lead (24).

Note: We define late or no prenatal care as mothers 15-19 who received no prenatal care or who only received prenatal care during the 3rd trimester. 

Sexual Behavior

The 2019 Minnesota Student Survey was administered to public school students in grades 5, 8, 9 and 11. Sexual health questions are only asked in grades 9 and 11. Approximately 66% of 9th graders and 54% of 11th graders participated in the 2019 MSS. 

Note: In 2010, the Minnesota Student Survey (MSS) stopped surveying 12th graders and in 2013 the MSS started surveying 11th graders instead and kept 9th graders as a trend.

Note: In 2010, the Minnesota Student Survey (MSS) stopped surveying 12th graders and in 2013 the MSS started surveying 11th graders instead and kept 9th graders as a trend.

Note: In 2010, the Minnesota Student Survey (MSS) stopped surveying 12th graders and in 2013 the MSS started surveying 11th graders instead and kept 9th graders as a trend.

Note: In 2010, the Minnesota Student Survey (MSS) stopped surveying 12th graders and in 2013 the MSS started surveying 11th graders instead and kept 9th graders as a trend.