Why Abstinence Only Education Doesn’t Work: A Neurobiological Perspective

The neurology and endocrinology underlying the sexual impulses in teenagers has been widely ignored in the debate regarding sexual education. All behaviors have some sort of biological or neurological basis, and understanding what underlies sexual behavior might lead to a more empirically supported—and ultimately better—way of addressing the problem with sexual education in schools. Hormones like estrogens and testosterone ensure that we have the appropriate physiology to reproduce, but also push us to engage in sexual intercourse (which is both risky and extenuating on the body) to ensure the survival of the human race.

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The Birth Control Pill

Birth control pills work by providing your body with a dose of estrogen and progesterone that prevents ovulations. Like everything we put inside our bodies, it’s effect is not specific to the reproductive organs, but rather a generalized effect. It is also worth noting that hormones can work as neurotransmitters, affecting the brain and nervous system directly.

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