Improving Support for Delaying Early Childbearing Among Newly Married Adolescent Girls
Publication Date: 01/04/2022
Each year around the world, almost 13 million girls under the age of 20 give birth, nearly 1 million of whom are younger than 15 (1). Child marriage is a strong indicator of early birth; 90% of adolescent pregnancies in the developing world are to girls who are already married; and married adolescents are more likely to experience frequent and early pregnancies than their unmarried peers (2, 3). Adolescent girls who undergo early marriage (often defined as prior to age 18) and subsequent rapid birth are more likely to experience a host of negative physical, mental and economic outcomes, including complications during pregnancy and delivery, higher rates of maternal mortality, and poor educational and economic outcomes for both themselves and their children (2-5).