BAGUIO CITY, July 22 (PIA) —Parenting style and level of education are among top predictors of early Childbearing in the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR).
This is revealed in a Population Commission- funded Research conducted by University of the Philippines Professor Josefina Natividad which was presented during a dissemination forum held at Prince Plaza Hotel Baguio City on July 21.
The research titled “Predictors and Timing of Early Childbearing in the Cordillera Administrative Region” sourced its data from the 2013 Young Adult Fertility and Sexuality Study 4 (YAFSS 4). The sample for the study is 262 women aged 20-24.
In the YAFSS 4, CAR has the highest proportion of young women aged 15-19 who had begun childbearing at 18.4 percent, much higher than the national rate of 13.6%.
Child bearing is defined as having given birth before reaching the age of 20.
Results of the study indicate that the proportion that had a birth before 20 is higher among non Cordillerans, rural resident and young women who were not raised by both parents compared with their respective counterparts.
By poverty status, there is no substantial difference between women classified as poor and the non-poor.
By completed education, high school undergraduates had the highest proportion with early childbearing experiences (57 %), followed by those with elementary level schooling (38%) and high school graduates (30%).The prevalence of early childbearing is lowest among those with college education at 16 %.
The study suggests that parenting styles may be protective against the risk of early childbearing, specifically, if the parents set clear standards for children to follow while growing up.
“The proportion that experienced early child bearing increases as the level of clarity of standards of the parents on the behaviour of children decreases.”
On the time of early childbearing, it showed that the proportion of childbearing before 20 is higher among non Cordillerans with a sudden increase at age 19 and it is mostly accounted for by births at ages 18 and 19. However in terms of exposure to the risk associated with early childbearing, the Cordillera women may be more at risk because they started childbearing earlier having recorded the youngest to be 13 years old.
“By marital status, four in 10 of the currently married 20-24 year olds began childbearing before the age of 20. Similarly, four in 19 of the currently cohabiting also experienced early childbearing. A small proportion of four percent of the never married had experienced early child bearing.”
The study summarized that among 20-24 year old women in CAR, 25% percent or one in four had a birth before the age 20 or were teenage mothers. The risk of early childbearing is not affected by urban-rural residence, poverty status, ethnicity or being raised by both parents. All are equally at risk. Having a college education significantly decreases the risk of early childbearing. The timing of early childbearing shows that most teenage births happen in the late teen years ages 17, 18 and 19.
The research also recommended that interventions should be age- and gender specific noting that the reception of 13 years old varies from the reception of 19 years old. (JDP/Brenden Kim Quintos- PIA CAR)