Recognizing World Day for the Prevention of Unplanned Pregnancy

Recognizing World Day for the Prevention of Unplanned Pregnancy

Today marks the "World Day for the Prevention of Unplanned Pregnancy in Adolescents."

On September 26, this day is commemorated, which was established for the first time in Mexico in 2006, with the purpose of sensitizing the general population regarding this issue that impacts health and safety, and the social and economic development of the population.

Because pregnancy in adolescents can not only put the health and even the life of the mother at risk, but also because it represents an obstacle to the personal, social and professional progress of adolescents, the Jalisco Health Secretariat led a virtual talk yesterday responding to some concerns about sexual and reproductive health in adolescence, and the importance of preventing unplanned pregnancies at this stage of life.

“In this period of life, pregnancy initiates and/or reinforces a series of conditions of vulnerability associated with the lack of preparation for this new responsibility. Early motherhood and fatherhood usually have serious negative effects on the sons and daughters of those adolescents, exposing them to adverse conditions that hinder their development, ”said Nahum Ariel Flores Chávez, SSJ inter-institutional liaison on Reproductive Health. 

Among the consequences of a pregnancy in adolescence, the specialist mentioned that the stay in school is truncated, economic income is affected, access to recreational, social, and specialized work opportunities is limited, possible repercussions on physical and mental health, and in the quality of life and human development.

Regarding health, he explained that teenage pregnancy is considered risky, which increases if the adolescent is not healthy or suffers from diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, obesity, among many others.

"The idea is that more and more women who are going to get pregnant take into account the actions they can and should do, knowing that many of the complications of pregnancy occur more at the extremes of age," Flores Chávez reported.

In addition to pregnancy, having unprotected sex carries a permanent risk of acquiring a sexually transmitted infection, the doctor emphasized.

The expert specified that the actions aimed at preventing pregnancy are part of the Sustainable Development Goals, which establish the guarantee of universal access to sexual and reproductive health services, including family planning, information and education, and integration of reproductive health into national strategies and programs.

The state has a strategy that provides care and guidance to adolescents regarding their sexuality.

“Friendly Services are specialized spaces that seek to guarantee sexual and reproductive rights in adolescents, and where we enforce each and every one of them. It is important to inform that the advice that is provided is totally free," said Blanca Olivia Villarroel Higareda, a doctor at the Friendly Services of the OPD Jalisco Health Services, after mentioning that a pregnant adolescent has access to all professional support for her health care.

Jalisco has 174 Friendly Services in 122 municipalities of the State, achieving 97% coverage. In the Friendly Services, adolescents are offered guidance and counseling on issues of sexuality, sexual health, and reproductive health specialized for adolescents. It is a free service, provided by trained personnel, and they also offer information and provision of contraceptive methods, if requested. The Friendly Services Program strengthens informed decision-making, quality health care, and support to develop the life project of adolescents.

Some of the adolescents also spoke in the virtual chat that was broadcast through the SSJ's social networks.

Edwin Alejandro Ramírez Nuño, student, said: “I find it very interesting, and very cool, every time doctors approach young people through the digital network, where there is free dissemination and they can answer questions. Young people are gradually entering these issues, and they are giving us the inclusion that previously they did not give us due to many factors.”

"Unfortunately I had to live the case of a close friend who had to leave her studies for a year since she had nowhere to leave her baby, which changed her life completely," said the young man.

Sofía Navarro Guzmán, narrated the case of an adolescent pregnancy in less than 15 years, which she met thanks to her father, who is a doctor, and invited her peers to approach the Friendly Services.

“It is important that they keep track of it and everything is free, thanks to the services that exist, so there is no pretext that you cannot, or you do not have enough resources. You have to do things right.”

The location of the 174 Friendly Services, where adolescents can go to receive personalized guidance, can be consulted at their website, where you can also find information on various topics aimed at adolescents:


Through the "Choose to Take Care" strategic program, the SSJ promotes actions to prevent pregnancy in adolescents, and encourage this age group to make informed and responsible decisions through professional guidance, and in coordination with educational institutions and the Health Sector.  

“We want young people to have all the tools to make a better decision; not only that they keep in mind that there are family planning methods,” commented Nahum Flores Chávez, while participating in the virtual opening of the XI Institutional Fair of Sexuality in High School, organized by the UTEG Baccalaureate University.

The doctor stressed that thanks to the sum of efforts it has been possible to reduce the pregnancy of births in women under 20 years of age. “In 2018, 16.7% of pregnancies, that is 21,251 events, occur in children under 20 years of age. In 2020 the percentage was reduced to 15.7%, or 16,781 births,” he explained.

“The Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health program works so that young people make informed and free decisions,” he said, after noting that the OPD Jalisco Health Services has 174 “Friendly Services” locations available.

“The regulations establish that adolescents can go without their parents to ask for guidance, including family planning methods," added Flores Chávez.

The specialist celebrated that the UTEG Baccalaureate carries out activities among its student community to strengthen knowledge about contraceptive methods and responsible sexuality.

The “Choose Take Care” strategy intensifies activities as part of the International Day for the Prevention of Teen Pregnancy. Currently in the vaccination macromodules of the Benito Juárez Auditorium and the CUCEI of the University of Guadalajara there are “Choose Take Care” points to provide guidance to young people, taking advantage of the fact that they come to receive the vaccine against COVID-19.

In 2020, Jalisco ranks 27th in the nation in percentage of adolescent pregnancy. In Jalisco there are 1,482,652 residents between the ages of 10 and 19 years.