SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — American teens are having less sex, especially boys.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention surveyed roughly 2,000 boys and girls, 15 to 19 and found the percentage of teens who reported they had sex at least once has dropped significantly since the 80s. The decline for male teens was greater than female teens.
In 2013, 44% of teenage girls surveyed said they had experienced sex, compared to 51% in 1988.
For teenage boys, the drop was more dramatic. In 1988, 60% reported they’d had sex compared to only 47% in 2013.
Changing sexual mores could explain the overall decline, but one expert believes it is because teens are better educated about sex. Dr. Brooke Bokor, an Adolescent Medicine Specialist at the Children’s National Health System says their smartphones may provide a private, comfortable space to access information.
“They’re looking on the web,” Bokor told the Washington Post. “They’re looking for guidance from parents, guardians and physicians. They can and will make positive decisions for their own health, both sexual and otherwise.”
The study also looked at contraceptive use and childbearing among teens in the United States.