What are the types of birth control?
There are many different kinds of birth control. Each has pros and cons. Learning about all the methods will help you find one that is right for you.
- Hormonal methods include birth control pills, shots, the skin patch, the implant, and the vaginal ring. There is also a hormonal IUD that releases a small amount of hormone. Birth control that uses hormones is very good at preventing pregnancy.
- Intrauterine devices (IUDs) are inserted into your uterus. IUDs work very well and are very safe. There are two main types of IUDs: copper IUDs and hormonal IUDs.
- Barrier methods include condoms, diaphragms, and sponges. In general, these do not prevent pregnancy as well as IUDs or hormonal methods do. Barrier methods must be used every time you have sex.
- Natural family planning (also called fertility awareness) can work if you and your partner are very careful. You will need to keep good records so you know when you are fertile. And during times when you are fertile, you will need to skip sex or use a barrier method.
- Permanent birth control (sterilization) gives you lasting protection against pregnancy. A man can have a vasectomy, or a woman can have her tubes tied (tubal ligation). But this is only a good choice if you are sure that you don't want any (or any more) children.
- Emergency contraception is a backup method to prevent pregnancy if you forget to use birth control or a condom breaks.
NOTE: For hormonal or barrier methods to work best, you have to use them exactly the way your provider or the package instructions say. Even then, accidents can happen. So it is a good idea to keep emergency birth control on hand as backup protection.
Come and speak with us to help you decide which method is best for you!
We cover all the key issues to consider if you are planning on having a baby. We explain how your menstrual cycle works, give tips on improving your chances of conceiving, help you plan for a pregnancy and provide trusted fertility advice.
We have lifestyle tips for you and your partner to optimize your pre-pregnancy health. And alongside the conception advice we provide a useful ovulation calculator, to calculate optimum time to start trying for your baby.