After the promise

The STD consequences of adolescent virginity pledges

Hannah Brückner, Peter Bearman

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

    Abstract

    Purpose: To examine the effectiveness of virginity pledges in reducing STD infection rates among young adults (ages 18-24). Methods: Data are drawn from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, a nationally representative study of students enrolled in grades 7-12 in 1995. During a follow-up survey in 2001-2002, respondents provided urine samples, which were tested for Human Papilloma Virus, Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, and Trichomoniasis. We report descriptive results for the relationship of pledge status and sexually transmitted disease (STD) rates as well as health behaviors commonly associated with STD infection. Results: Pledgers are consistently less likely to be exposed to risk factors across a wide range of indicators, but their STD infection rate does not differ from nonpledgers. Possible explanations are that pledgers are less likely than others to use condoms at sexual debut and to be tested and diagnosed with STDs. Conclusions: Adopting virginity pledges as intervention may not be the optimal approach to preventing STD acquisition among young adults.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)271-278
    Number of pages8
    JournalJournal of Adolescent Health
    Volume36
    Issue number4
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Jan 1 2005

    Fingerprint

    Sexual Abstinence
    Sexually Transmitted Diseases
    Papillomaviridae
    Young Adult
    National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health
    Chlamydia
    Gonorrhea
    Health Behavior
    Condoms
    Urine
    Students

    Keywords

    • Adolescent sexual behavior
    • STD acquisition
    • STD risk factors
    • STD testing
    • Virginity pledge

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
    • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
    • Psychiatry and Mental health

    Cite this

    After the promise : The STD consequences of adolescent virginity pledges. / Brückner, Hannah; Bearman, Peter.

    In: Journal of Adolescent Health, Vol. 36, No. 4, 01.01.2005, p. 271-278.

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

    Brückner, Hannah ; Bearman, Peter. / After the promise : The STD consequences of adolescent virginity pledges. In: Journal of Adolescent Health. 2005 ; Vol. 36, No. 4. pp. 271-278.
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