To study the knowledge and experience of sexuality, contraception and sexually transmitted diseases among sexually active adolescents in Sweden.
Youth clinic visitors.
Seventy-four youth clinics from all over the country of Sweden.
A questionnaire with 17 multiple choice and nine open questions was distributed to all visitors at participating youth clinics during a 2-month period.
A total of 9277 young persons answered the questionnaire. Their mean age was 17.5 years. Ninety-three percent were females. Knowledge on STD and STD protection was wide-spread and good. Chlamydia and HIV was recognised as STDs by 90% and 87% respectively. More than 99% knew of the condom method as a means for STD protection. Knowledge on contraceptive methods for pregnancy protection was also good. Ninety-three percent of the investigated adolescents had had coitus. Nine percent had experienced pregnancies and 17% STDs. The mean number of life-time sexual partners was 3.2.
In spite of good knowledge on preventive measures among Swedish youth clinic visitors their sexual behaviour carriers risks for future health. Further interventions are needed to minimise these risks.