OBJECTIVE--To study the knowledge and experience of sexuality, contraception and sexually transmitted diseases among sexually active adolescents in Sweden. SUBJECTS--Youth clinic visitors. SETTING--Seventy-four youth clinics from all over the country of Sweden. METHODS--A questionnaire with 17 multiple choice and nine open questions was distributed to all visitors at participating youth clinics during a 2-month period. RESULTS--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. CONCLUSIONS--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.
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