Multilevel predictors of inconsistent condom use among adolescent mothers

Am J Public Health. 2009 Oct;99 Suppl 2(Suppl 2):S417-24. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2007.131870. Epub 2009 Apr 16.


Objectives: We used Bronfenbrenner's ecological systems theory to identify factors that predicted never or sometimes using condoms in a multiethnic cohort of adolescent mothers.

Methods: We interviewed adolescent mothers within 48 hours of delivery and surveyed them 6 and 12 months after delivery (n = 636). We used multinomial logistic regression to identify individual-, dyad-, family-, and peer and community-level factors associated with never or sometimes using versus always using condoms during intercourse at 12 months postpartum.

Results: Pregnancy status, partner refusal to use condoms, intimate partner violence, and race/ethnicity predicted both never and sometimes using condoms. Condom use 6 months earlier and church attendance also predicted never using condoms, whereas maternal monitoring was an additional predictor for sometimes using condoms.

Conclusions: Overlapping yet distinct risk profiles predicted never or sometimes using versus always using condoms. Factors from multiple levels of influence affected the condom use behaviors of adolescent mothers indicating that multilevel interventions are needed to promote safer sexual practices among these young women.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adolescent Behavior*
  • Condoms / statistics & numerical data*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Mothers*
  • Odds Ratio
  • Sexual Behavior*
  • Social Support