Birth Control Methods

 Abstinence (effective 100%)

  • Not having sex
  • Prevents STD/HIV
  • May not be realistic for some people

Intrauterine Device IUD (99%)

  • Offers protection for 3-10 years depending on the type
  • Can be inserted on-site at Health Department and during the postpartum visit
  • Reduces fear of a pregnancy
  • Does not prevent STD/HIV

Contraceptive Injection (perfect use 99%, typical 97%)        

  • Last for 3 months
  • Need to come to the clinic every 11-12 weeks
  • Reduces menstrual cramps
  • May cause weight gain
  • Does not prevent STD/HIV

Birth Control Pills (perfect use 99%, typical 92%)

  • Lighter more regular periods
  • Reduces menstrual cramps
  • May reduce the risk of ovarian cancer
  • Must take a pill every day at the same time each day
  • Missing pills increases the risk of pregnancy
  • Antibiotics will decrease the effectiveness of the pill
  • Does not prevent STD/HIV

The Patch (perfect use 99%, typical 92%)

  • Put on once a week
  • Comfortable and easy to use
  • Less effective in women who are overweight
  • Does not prevent STD/HIV

Condoms (perfect use 98%, typical 85%)

  • Reduces risk of STD/HIV
  • Put on before sex, a new one each time
  • Remove carefully to prevent spilling
  • Free at the Health Department, available at local pharmacies
  • More effective with spermicide

Spermicide (perfect use 82%, typical use 71%)

  • Use before sex
  • Use each time have sex
  • More effective with condoms
  • Available at pharmacies
  • Does not prevent STD/HIV

Emergency Contraception (89%)

  • Prevents release of an egg after having unprotected sex
  • Must take as soon as possible, within 5 days
  • Effectiveness decrease with each passing day
  • May obtain at a pharmacy, need a prescription if under 17 years of age
  • Not to be used as a long-term method to prevent pregnancy
  • Does not prevent STD/HIV