A contraceptive is a method or device used to prevent pregnancy. Picking a birth control method that fits your lifestyle and needs is important. When you are considering the different methods, you should ask your doctor about effectiveness, side effects, and risks.
Pregnancy rate per year
Less than 1%Tubal ligation, vasectomy, IUD
2-9%Breastfeeding, birth control pills, ring, patch
15-24%Diaphragm, condoms, withdrawal, cervical cap
25%Spermicide, rhythm method
The Hormonal Contraceptives include birth control pills, the vaginal ring, the patch, implants, and injections. These methods work by delivering a steady state of hormones that stops the natural process of ovulation so an egg is not released.
The Barrier Methods of birth control include the diaphragm, cervical cap, and condoms for men and women. These methods block the passage of sperm so that fertilization of an egg cannot occur.
Sterilization is a surgical procedure that results in permanent contraception. In men, a vasectomy closes the tubes that carry sperm. In women, a tubal ligation blocks the passageway of the Fallopian tubes so sperm cannot meet an egg.
An IUD, or intrauterine device, is a small T shaped device that is inserted into the uterus. It prevents pregnancy by affecting the way sperm swim through the uterus so fertilization cannot occur. Some IUDs that contain a hormone also prevent ovulation.
With Fertility Awareness Methods, or the rhythm method, a woman can chart her menstrual cycle to understand when her most fertile days are. She would then abstain from intercourse during that time.
With so many options in the world of contraception, it is important to ask your doctor which may be best for you.