Children’s Health and Development among Mexican-Origin Teen Mothers

Sarah M. Kendig, Arkansas State University
Kelly Purtell, University of Texas at Austin
Adriana Umana-Taylor, Arizona State University

The highest teen birth rate in the U.S. is among Mexican-origin adolescent females (Martin et al., 2011). We build upon existing literature on the risks of teenage childbearing that has been largely based on non-Hispanic white and Black disadvantaged youth by considering this understudied yet important population. Using data from the 9-month and 2-year interviews and assessments of the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study-Birth cohort (ECLS-B), we examine children’s health and developmental outcomes among Mexican-origin teen mothers utilizing risk and resilience and life course perspectives. Preliminary analyses reveal that the children of Mexican-origin teen mothers have a higher average number of health problems than comparable non-teen mothers. Further analyses for this paper will assess the possible indirect effects of particular resource factors and maternal characteristics as well as more closely consider the role that nativity plays in the association between Mexican-origin mothers’ age at birth and children’s outcomes.

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Presented in Poster Session 3: Health of Women, Children, and Families