Teen pregnancy rates are on the decline, but that doesn’t mean teens are not getting pregnant. According to some reports, the repeat pregnancy rate for teens is somewhere near 50-percent and many repeat pregnancies are happening within one year of giving birth. Though doctors and counselors may not be able to change lifestyle choices, they can impact the repeat pregnancy rates, according to a new study, using implanted contraception.

What is implanted contraception?
Implanted contraception is a progesterone stick that is positioned just below the skin. The implant delivers progesterone, which prevents the lining of the uterus from thickening. Ovulation is also suppressed when the implant is in place. The contraceptive implant is effective for as many as three years, so repeat pregnancies within the first year could be avoided altogether.

When researchers studied the longevity factor, or how long the teens left the implant in place, the results were positive. At six months postpartum, more than 95-percent of the teens were still using the implant. At one year, that number dropped to 86-percent, but that is still a huge impact on repeat pregnancy prevention. By the one year mark, four women from the implant group had become pregnant, but only one was due to implant failure. The remaining three had the implant taken out before becoming pregnant. One of the reasons teens stopped using the implant was difficulty maintaining a regular menstrual cycle. By the same year mark, 38 pregnancies in the non-implant group were reported.

There are many reasons to choose the birth control implant if you are a new teen mom, but there are also a couple of concerns. If you are breastfeeding, it is best to wait at least four weeks before having the implant inserted. Some of the hormones from the implant will pass to the baby through breastmilk and the cost of the implant is up to $800.

Source: David Douglas. Reuters. May 11, 2012.