Fewer American Teens Having Sex: CDC
According to a CDC survey of risky youth behaviors, the percentage of high school kids who said they had ever had sex has dropped to around 41 percent from the 47 percent level seen for much of the last decade. The survey also saw declines in the proportion of students who said they'd had sex recently, had four or more partners, or had sex before they were 13 years old.
The CDC survey of 16,000 students at 125 public and private schools also found a decrease in other risky behaviors, including illegal drug use.
While researchers were at a loss to point to definite causes for the declines, many cited the way we talk about sex and sexuality today. More open and straightforward discussions around sex, in other words, might take away some of the air of mystery. "Culturally," observed Beth Marshall, a Johns Hopkins University scientist focused on adolescent health quoted at NBCNews.com, "we may have shifted away from sex being a taboo that adolescents would sort of reach out for."
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