BIRTH CONTROL

Birth control is what is used to temporarily or permanently limit the reproductive capacity of an individual or their sexual partner in order to prevent pregnancy.

 

It is important to emphasize that you chose your birth control method only for its contraceptive protection, not for protection against sexually transmitted infections (STIs), which only condoms are proven to help reduce the risk of STIs. This is why condom usage is still highly recommended.

With Hormones

Without Hormones

There are lots of different birth control options out there.

We’re here to help you figure it all out.

Pick what’s important to you to find your best birth control method.

 

Diaphragm

A soft, shallow silicone cup shaped like a small saucer. To apply it is folded in half and inserted into the vagina covering the cervix and acts as a barrier to cover the cervix to prevent sperm from attaching to an egg. For best results, use with spermicide (a cream or gel that destroys sperm).

Advantages

  • Can be inserted up to one hour before sexual intercourse

  • Very practical and allow you to have more control

  • The diaphragms do not have hormones

Disadvantages

  • Only used during sex

  • Using the diaphragm correctly can be difficult

  • Spermicide can have side effects

Effectiveness

If used perfectly every single time during sex, it’s 94% effective; but nobody’s perfect, so in real life diaphragms are about 88% effective.

IUD (Intrauterine Device)

 

IUD stands for Intrauterine Device (basically: a device inside your uterus). It's a small piece of flexible plastic shaped like a T and one of the most long-term, reversible, and effective methods of birth control.

Advantages

  • Very effective and requires little to no maintenance

  • Can last up to 10 years

  • Fertility returns with relative ease once it is removed

  • Does not interfere with sexual relations

Disadvantages

  • Does not protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs)

  • During the first three months after placement, there may be heavy bleeding or spotting between periods as well as cramping and pain during periods

  • Must be inserted  and removed by a doctor

Effectiveness

If used correctly, IUDs have an effectiveness of 95 to 99%.

Spermicide

 

A substance that contains chemicals that stop sperm from reaching an egg. They come in many different forms: creams, gels, film, foams, and suppositories (soft inserts that melt into a cream inside your vagina). To prevent pregnancy, apply directly into the vagina before sex.

Advantages

  • Controlled by women

  • Has no side effects

  • Can stop usage at any moment

  • Can offer more lubrication

  • Only used during sex

Disadvantages

  • Can sometimes cause an allergic reaction

  • Do not protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs)

Effectiveness

Is up to 85% effective.

 

Birth Control Implant

A small, thin stick about the size of a match that releases hormones in the body to prevent pregnancy. A nurse or doctor places the implant in your arm, and that's it: you have protection against pregnancy up to 5 years.

Advantages

  • Avoid pregnancy for a minimum of 5 years

  • The implant is practical and discreet

  • Does not interfere with sexual relationships

  • Fertility returns immediately after it is removed

Disadvantages

  • Amenorrhea, or the absence of a period.

  • The implant can have negative side effects such as headaches, dizziness, nervousness, nausea, among others.

  • Does not protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

Effectiveness

It is up to 99% effective at preventing pregnancy.

Sources:

Planned Parenthood® . (2018). Métodos Anticonceptivos. Recuperado de https://www.plannedparenthood.org/es/temas-de-salud/anticonceptivos

Sosa Josué; Sansores Deily; Suárez Lizandra y Rodríguez Lucía. (2018). Métodos Anticonceptivos. Recuperado de libro de campaña de promoción de la salud sexual y reproductiva (P. 26-37).