Teenage Pregnancy Effects On Mom: Physical Effects Before And After Baby

We take a look at some of the physical effects teenage pregnancy can have on mom both when discovery they are pregnant and long-term health effects.

Sometimes it can be tough to recognize the signs of teenage pregnancy and to know the physical effects mom can expect. Ultimately the mom needs to take care of both her body and the baby once she knows she is pregnant. Below let’s take a look at some of the early physical signs that a teenager is pregnant and why it can be difficult to recognize those signs. We can also take a closer look at some of the other physical effects teens can expect during and after pregnancy that are linked directly to teenage pregnancy.

Physical Signs Of Pregnancy

Most adults know the major signs of pregnancy, but with teenage girls it can sometimes be trickier to recognize those signs. According to WebMD here are some of the signs of pregnancy and reasons why it might be harder for a teenager to realize they are pregnant.

  • Missed menstrual cycle– Young girls sometimes have irregular periods, or their menstrual cycles may be thrown off from sports or even eating disorders
  • Nausea or vomiting– Also can be caused by unhealthy eating patterns or sickness
  • Aversion suddenly to foods– Teens who are on the go or dealing with body conscious issues or disorders may not realize right away why they are avoiding some foods
  • Sore nipples or breasts– Puberty or strenuous sports can also cause similar issues.
  • Unusual fatigue– Today’s teens are often stretched even thinner between school, sports and part-time jobs. With school often starting very early in the morning and teens that tend to stay up late, fatigue in teenagers is not uncommon.
  • Unusual mood swings– Hormones during puberty can often cause similar issues.

Related: 16 and Pregnant: The Basic Facts of Teenage Pregnancy

Most women do not have all of these pregnancy symptoms, which can make pregnancy early on tougher to spot with a teenager. Pre-natal care for both the baby and the teen is so important to help ensure a healthy pregnancy. Less prenatal because the pregnancy was discovered later on means fewer chances of detecting preventable issues early.

Physical Effects Of Teenage Pregnancy

Every new mom deals with changes in her body when pregnant. Many new moms experience all kind of challenges from stretch marks to gestational diabetes to varicose veins. Teen moms have a few extra health issues to watch out for.

More Chance of C-section

According to How Stuff Works, teen mothers are more likely to need a C-section. The pelvic bone does not fully develop in an adult until about age eighteen. If the pelvic bone is underdeveloped, there may to be enough room for the baby to be born vaginally. C-sections means a longer recovery time for mom then if the baby was born vaginally.


Teens are more likely to develop Anemia, which is an iron and vitamin deficiency. Slight anemia is normal in pregnancy, but teens whose growing bodies also need the nutrients are at a much higher risk. Anemia has been linked to low birth rates, birth defects and postpartum depression.

Related: Teenage Pregnancy Effects On Baby: Discussing The Challenges


A new study in Medical Daily has shown that teen pregnancy can be linked to obesity. While researchers think that other factors such as lifestyle, race, education and income level are more direct links, the study shows that having a baby in your teens can mean long term health risks.

What other physical effects can you expect with teenage pregnancy for mom? Do you know a teen that had trouble spotting pregnancy signs? Tell us about it in the comments!

Image Credit: Thomas van Ardenne

30 thoughts on “Teenage Pregnancy Effects On Mom: Physical Effects Before And After Baby”

  1. I think talking to our kids about this is so important. I would prefer my kids wait to have their own kids until after college and a degree, but I do know things happen.

  2. I was a teen mom. I wouldn’t change a thing. I also didn’t end up having a c-section for any of my babies thankfully, but I dunno. I look at teen pregnancy much different than the average person.

  3. That is interesting that they report that teens are more likely to need c-sections. 100 years ago most people were married and starting families well before they were 18….

    And I agree with another poster that sex education should start at home.

  4. I think sex education should start at home. It would be best for us to discuss it with our kids in a way that they understand about teenage pregnancy. Encourage our kids to be open about their problems so that they do not turn to someone else when they need to talk about things.

  5. This is such an important topic. Seems like I’m seeing more and more teenage pregnancies lately. These young girls really need to be educated on the effects of pregnancy.

  6. Teenage pregnancy is high in this country and needs to go down. Education is the best thing for kids to understand how hard it is to have a baby and be pregnant as a teenager.

  7. Robin Rue (@massholemommy)

    I think those effects could apply to any mom, but I also think teen pregnancy needs to end. We need better sex ed in our country!

  8. Thanks for bringing up such an important topic. Teen pregnancy not only affects the teen in that she has to grow up quickly to become a mom but there are health issues as you described here.

    Thank you for sharing this Kristy. I hope you’re having a great week.


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