Promotion of the HPV Vaccine Is Not Leading to More Sex
January 3, 2019
Maybe it sounds obvious, but if I weren’t having sex, I wouldn’t suddenly start because of a vaccine! Yet some parents have refused the HPV vaccine for their children because they believe it will encourage them to become sexually active. A recent study shows this isn’t the case.
Researchers at Harvard University concluded that teens living in states with laws that promote the HPV vaccine didn’t change their behavior or take more sexual risks (like having sex without a condom) than teens living in states without such laws. Researchers reviewed data from 2001-2015, from the Youth Risk Behavior Survey, a survey of high school students conducted every two years by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). They then compared students in states with laws encouraging the HPV vaccine to teens in states that don’t have these laws. The study not only revealed that the laws don’t affect teen sexual behavior but also showed that the rate of teen sex has gradually gone down since the HPV vaccine became widely available in 2007.
The HPV vaccine is extremely important since it protects against strains of HPV that cause certain cancers, like cervical cancer. Who doesn’t want good cancer prevention methods?