Pre-marital sex now at 14 years of age among city teens: Study

Indian teens are not only sexually active at a younger age than before, but they are contracting sexually transmitted infections in numbers higher than before.

Pre-marital sex now at 14 years of age among city teens: Study

The need for sex education as a part of the Indian education system has been a topic of heated debate for a long time. Many arguments have been given as basis for why there should be sex education for youngsters in Indian schools. Adding another one to the bag is a study that was conducted, which says that Indian teens are not only sexually active at a younger age than before, but they are contracting sexually transmitted infections in numbers higher than before.

A survey based on interviews of 15,000-odd teens between 13 and 19 years of age from 20 cities including the metros, revealed that around 8.9% gave a history indicative of sexually transmitted infection at least once. The average age of first sexual contact for boys was 13.72 years and 14.09 years for girls.

According to a leading English daily, the survey stated that among those surveyed, over 6.3% boys and over 1.3% girls reported to have had intercourse at least once. The average age at first intercourse in those who had it was 14 years for boys and 16 years for girls.

The daily also quoted well-known sexologist Dr M Watsa saying that, "The STD-affected numbers seem huge. Given India's population, even 4% is a huge number,".

The point that concerns most doctors at this stage is the inadequate awareness of STDs and prevention as well as the use or lack thereof of contraceptives. Children these days need more reliable communication channels to acquire sex-related information other than online pornography or their friends whose mindsets largely revolve around rumours or myths accompanying sex.

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