Religious teens tend to lose their virginity as much as three years later than teens who are not, according to a new study in the journal Pediatrics.
Teens with a strong religious background tend to become sexually active on average at age 21, regardless if they had taken a virginity pledge.
The study reports that virginity pledges do not work, because those students who said they would wait to have sex until marriage were just as likely to have pre-marital sex as those who did not take the pledge. Those teens who took the pledge were also reportedly less likely to use condoms than non-pledgers.
The studies author says the findings support the need for sex and safe sex education in schools, but acknowledges that parents need to have serious conversations with their kids when it comes to sex and how to protect themselves.
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