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Teen Health: Take Charge of You!

Your teenage years are meaningful and memorable. The choices you make today for your health and well-being can change the rest of your life. Having a plan for what you want for your life is an important first step in helping YOU to live your best life! You have the power to make choices for yourself. DE Thrives can help guide you along the way.

It’s Your Life. Plan It.

When it comes to your health, relationships, and education, are you ready for what’s next? You’ll have a lot to consider as you figure out what matters to you and what kind of person you want to be. Don’t just let things happen to you. It’s your life. Be informed to make your own choices and make a life plan. My Life, My Plan: Teen can help.

My Life. My Plan: Teen
Teens sitting on the steps learning about teen health

Female students are more than three times as likely to experience sexual dating violence and more than three times as likely to be forced to have sex than male students in the United States.

Dealing with Life Stresses

Life can be stressful. You not only have to deal with learning about yourself but the people around you, too. From different relationships, to bullying, every teen has stress to deal with. Looking for tips on how to manage? Check out the topics below:

Teen pregnancy. Teen stressed about a pregnancy test. What if You Find Out You’re Pregnant?

What if You Find Out You’re Pregnant?

Pregnancy happens, even if you’re a teenager. Teen pregnancy comes with a high cost to your health. It also comes with emotional, social, and financial costs for both teen mothers and their children.

A pregnant teen laying her head on her desk.

The Reality of Teen Pregnancy

  • Being a teen parent will force you to grow up fast.
  • Think about it — being a teen parent is like babysitting all day, every day, and not getting paid.
  • Parenthood is the main reason why most teen girls drop out of school.
  • A baby won’t solve relationship problems or make your partner stay with you. Most teen fathers don’t marry the mother of their child.
  • Graduation, college, parties, spring break, sleeping in … all the fun things you’re looking forward to will have to be put on hold, maybe even forever.
  • The majority of families begun by a young unmarried mother are poor.
  • Babies are expensive. Costs can add up to $10,000 in the first year alone. Without a degree or job, how would you pay for that?

If you do become pregnant, make sure you and your baby have the best chance for a healthy life — make sure you visit the health care provider in your first 12 weeks of pregnancy. If you need help with insurance, you could qualify for Medicaid. Teen pregnancy comes with a high cost to your health. It also comes with emotional, social, and financial costs for both teen parents and their children.

There are programs to help you along your pregnancy journey.

The Home Visiting and Community Health Worker programs are two ways you can get help when it comes to navigating pregnancy. Community Health Workers (CHWs) serve as a connection between health/social services and the community to simplify access to services and improve service delivery. CHWs aim to build individual and community capacity to improve health outcomes through a variety of activities such as outreach, health education, informal counseling, social support, linkages and referrals to health care, as well as community resources such as financial coaching or housing. There are Community Health Workers available statewide to help you.

The Home Visiting program can lead you in the right direction. A Family Support Specialist can help you to raise healthy children, support your education, and inform you about available resources that match your needs as a teen parent. Call 2-1-1 or text your ZIP code to 898211 to learn more information and to sign up for this free service.

What else could you do to have a good pregnancy? Check out our Expectant Moms page.

Expectant Moms
A pregnant teen getting help on the phone.

Need Assistance?

Need help with something that can’t wait? Whether a way to find or pay for healthy foods or another urgent need you or your friends may have, Help Me Grow at Delaware 2-1-1 is a free one-stop call center to answer questions or get you the help you need. Contact Delaware 2-1-1 now! You may also text your ZIP code to 898211.

Breaking Down Barriers

Now is the time for everyone to make the choices to stay healthy, but not everyone has the same opportunity to do that.

Additional Resources

Below are resources and outside services that can help.

Child Mind Institute

Find information at the Child Mind Institute to help support you when struggling with emotional health challenges.

Help is Here.

Your emotional well-being matters. Experiencing a mental health challenge can be confusing and frightening. You or someone you care about may be suffering and need help. But you may not know where to turn. Help is Here. Call the Delaware Hope Line for free 24/7 counseling, coaching, and support as well as links to mental health, addiction, and crisis services.

National Alliance on Mental Illness

Since mental health conditions typically begin during childhood, adolescence, or young adulthood, the National Alliance on Mental Illness has essential information and resources intended to help young people get the mental health support they need.

© 2024. Delaware Division of Public Health.