A new study, published in the journal Pediatrics, has found that parents who keep tabs on their kids and set rules have teenagers who are more cautious about sex.


Co-author Vincent Guilamo-Ramos, co-director of the Center for Latino Adolescent and Family Health at New York University's Silver School of Social Work, said that the results show “parents really matter, and they’re influential.”


The research combined and analysed the results from 30 studies around the world, that took place between 1984 to 2014.


Looking at the effects of parental activities such as setting rules, the goal was to see if kids of more watchful parents were more included to skip sexual activity or use birth control.


The results showed that kids whose parents kept an eye on them were more likely to use condoms and other forms of protection.



Talking about the results, Guilamo-Ramos said: “When kids are sexually active, it's less about setting clear rules and more about having a better relationship and better communication.”


Assistant professor of counselling psychology and human services at the University of Oregon Atika Khurana, told CBC News that the results show it’s possible that kids who don't do risky things communicate more with their parents about their lives.  


While it suggests that parental monitoring does matter, according to Khurana, other research has shown parenting can backfire when kids see it as too controlling, so “parents have to be mindful of their child's growing autonomy needs."


"When it starts to get problematic is when it's controlling and doesn't reflect that young people have to weigh in and provide their perspective," Guilamo-Ramos said.