Condom use declines among US teens

Sexual activity among high street students in the US has fallen, according to new data, but condom usage is also down among American teenagers.

Research by the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that just over a third (34 per cent) of high school students in the US are currently sexually active, which is down from the figure of 38 per cent when the study was conducted in 1991.

However, it was also revealed by the study that condom use also has declined among those teens who are having sex, from almost two-thirds (63 per cent) in 2003 to 59 per cent in 2013.

"It's encouraging that high school students are making better health choices such as not fighting, not smoking, and not having sex," said CDC director Dr Tom Frieden.

"Way too many young people still smoke and other areas such as texting while driving remain a challenge. Our youth are our future. We need to invest in programmes that help them make healthy choices so they live long, healthy lives."

The CDC report found that since 1991, there has been an increase in the prevalence of having used a condom during last sexual intercourse. It was noted by the body that this rate has increased from 46 per cent to 59 per cent in the last 22 years. However, data collected by the organisation in 2003 showed 63 per cent of teens used a condom the last time they had sex.

It said: "The prevalence of having used a condom during last sexual intercourse did not change from 2011 (60.2 per cent) to 2013 (59.1 per cent)."

Not only are condoms the most reliable method of avoiding an unwanted pregnancy, they are also the best way for sexually active people to lessen their chances of contracting a sexually transmitted infection when they have sex with a new partner.

The CDC also revealed that the prevalence of having used a condom during last sexual intercourse was higher among males (65.8 per cent) than females (53.1 per cent) students.