Health officials say U.S. abortions fell 5 percent over a year, the largest decrease in at least a decade.

The decline is from 2008 to 2009, the most recent government numbers available. They were reported today by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Some experts say the decline in abortions may be due to better use of birth control during tough economic times. They speculate that women may have felt they couldn't afford to get pregnant. The birth rate also has declined during the recession.

Some states have enacted more restrictive abortion laws, but most of those were adopted too recently to have any effect on the 2009 statistics.


Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.