224074 Defining Sexual Activity among Young Adult Females during Transition from High School to Early Adulthood: The Need for Continued Sex Discussion with Parents

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Evelyn King-Marshall, MPH, CHES , Department of Behavioral Science and Community Health, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL
Tracey E. Barnett, PhD , Department of Behavioral Science and Community Health, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL
Thalia V. Smith, MPH , Department of Behavioral Science and Community Health, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL
Jessi Gold, MS , Adolescent Health, The National Alliance to Advance Adolescent Health, Washington, DC
The purpose of the study is to examine alcohol and drug use, weight loss practices and sexual activity among young adult females. Attitudes and beliefs about sex are important issues among young women. In 2008, there were 386,561 STD cases among women age 20-24 (CDC, 2009). Researchers conducted qualitative interviews with participants at high school completion (N=16) and one year follow-up (N=12). Interviews lasted approximately 15-30 minutes. The research team transcribed and independently coded the interviews. In Yr1, 37% (N=6) defined themselves as sexually active. In Yr 2, 50 % (N=6) reported being sexually active. During Yr2, 25% (N=3) changed their definition of sexual activity from not including oral sex to including oral sex. Sixty-six percent (N=8) reported an increase in the number sexual partners. During Yr2, 50% (N=6) reported being sexually active, however, 75% (N=9) reported one or more sexual partners. In Yr1 (37.5%, N=6) and Yr2 (50%, N=6) participants reported that their parents spoke with them about sex. Thirty-three percent (N=4) reported that their parents talked to them about sex during both Yr1 and Yr2. During the transition from high school to young adulthood females experience an increase in sexual activity. Their understanding and feelings towards sex change dramatically during the transition time. This transition often leads to confusion about sex and safe sex practices. It is essential that parents continue to communicate with their daughters about sex during this influential time period.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs

Learning Objectives:
1) Identify one of the key reasons for continued sex discussion between young adult females and parents. 2) Explain the key issues of defining and measuring sexual activity among young adult females.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present because I collected the data and I am currently working on data analysis on the project.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.