Sexual Health news - Sexual Health and Behavior

Paternal relationships with offspring may influence adolescent sexual behavior

According to a study published in the journal Pediatrics, the parenting behavior of fathers may impact their children's sexual behavior as adolescents. This is the first study of its kind that has addressed how the relationship between a male and his offspring influence a teen's decisions about sex. Previously, research has primarily focused on parents' association with their children's reproductive outcomes and sexual health, but it has always been the mothers who were the variable in question.

Researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention specifically focused on paternal influence on an adolescent's sexual debut and looked through several electronic databases to take note of what 13 previous studies, published between 1980 and 2011, have concluded. They found that most scientists, in the past, have linked the emotional relationship between a father and his child with sexual behavior. Communication about sex between the two parties has been found to have significant influence, while a father's personal beliefs about sex do not.

The results of the study conclude that more research is needed on this subject. Eventually, the study's investigators would like to have enough information on the connection between father and child and the way it impacts sexual behavior during adolescence to provide recommendations for primary care physicians and public health officials on how to bring fathers into interventions aiming to decrease risky sexual behavior among the age group. This could potentially help healthcare professionals decrease a teenager's likelihood of contracting a sexually transmitted disease - such as chlamydia, gonorrhea or genital herpes - or accidently conceiving a child. Fathers may play a big part in emphasizing responsible and safe decisions about sex. 
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