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The number of women giving birth under the age of 20 has halved over the past 10 years, newly-released NHS statistics have shown.

Exactly 22,032 women under 20 gave birth in NHS hospitals in 2015/16, compared to 44,123 deliveries in 2005/6.

The figures were released as part of NHS Digital’s ‘Hospital Maternity Activity’ published on Wednesday 9 November. 

NHS Digital

The graph above, released by NHS Digital, also shows there has been a 12.7% increase in women over 40 giving birth in the past ten years (from 22,123 in 2005/06 to 24,942 in 2015/16).

The number of women giving birth between the ages of 20 and 30 has slightly risen year-on-year. 

There were 164 children who gave birth aged 14 and under in 2015/16 in NHS hospitals. This is a slight increase from 2013/14, when 133 girls aged under 14 gave birth. 

In total, there were 648,107 births in NHS hospitals during 2015/16, which was an increase of 1.8% compared to last year. 

Catherine Delahaye via Getty Images

The statistics also revealed the type of births women have had.

The proportion of spontaneous deliveries has dropped from 64.8% in 2005/06 to 60% in 2015/16.

Caesarean deliveries increased by 3%, from 24.1% in 2005/6 to 27.1% in 2015/16.

All age groups up to 35 to 39 years had a majority (over 50%) of spontaneous deliveries. But the proportion of caesarean deliveries increased with age and accounted for over 50% of deliveries among women aged 45 and over in 2015/16. 

For these women, 55% of the caesareans were elective and 45% were emergencies. 

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