Birth Control Guide
Birth control has been around, in some form, for thousands of years. In this section you'll find detailed information about all of the common forms of birth control used today as well as in depth information on responsible sexual choices, and even birth control technology of the future.
Welcome to the site where you can learn everything you need to know about choosing birth control, types of birth control like the Mini-Pill and combined oral contraceptive pills, fertility awareness, emergency contraception, and about family planning and new birth control methods.
Barrier Methods for Women: Barrier methods are some of the oldest methods of birth control. Women in ancient Egypt used vaginal suppositories to prevent pregnancy. However, unlike the sponges of today and modern spermicides, Egyptian women concocted their vaginal suppositories out of crocodile dung and honey. Modern devices include the traditional diaphragm as well as its smaller counterparts, the FemCap cervical cap and Lea's Shield. For protection against many sexually transmitted diseases, the female condom is now a reality.
Barrier Methods Overview
Natural Methods: These methods are also termed "periodic abstinence" because a women abstains from sex on days that she is fertile. Natural methods require no drugs or internal devices. These include methods that use charts, such as the symptothermal method and the ovulation mucus method, as well as calendar-based methods, such as the antiquated rhythm method and its successor, the new standard days method (also known as CycleBeads).
Natural Family Planning
Basal Body Temperature
Fertility Awareness Charting
Standard Days Method
Hormonal Contraceptives: Hormonal methods include all contraceptives that use synthetic female hormones as birth control. The oldest of these is The Pill, which includes combined oral contraceptive pills and the newer estrogen-free mini-pill. These same hormones are used in the OrthoEvra patch and the Nuva vaginal ring. Lunelle is one type of birth control shot available along with Depo-provera, an estrogen-free three-month birth control injection. Read about the controversy surrounding the mechanisms of all hormonal contraceptives.
Birth Control Pills
Pill Questions & Answers
The Pill and Controversy
Long Term Birth Control: For women who are interested in worry-free birth control that lasts a year or more, the IUD is often recommended by doctors. Norplant implants last up to five years but are no longer available in the U.S., although women elsewhere may be able to obtain them. Similar to Norplant, Implanon has recently been approved for use in the U.S. Women who want no more children may opt for a tubal ligation, but keep in mind this is permanent and not easily reversed.
Intrauterine Device (IUD)
Tubal Ligation Reversal
Methods for Men: When it comes to reversible methods for men, condoms are the only option. Condoms are popular because they are easy to use and inexpensive. Made of latex, plastic, or natural animal tissues, condoms can prevent both pregnancy and sexually transmitted disease. For men who are sure they want no more children, a vasectomy is a surgical option. While this birth control should be seen as permanent, it is possible to get a vasectomy reversal.
|BIRTH CONTROL FOR MEN
Birth Control Issues: See our chart on birth control comparisons to educate yourself about effective methods of birth control and ineffective methods, like withdrawal (the pull-out method). Learn about safe versus safer sex and what to do when contraception fails. See our important facts about hormonal-based emergency contraceptives and elective abortion. Some contraceptive methods may increase your risk of dangerous blood clots. If you use the birth control patch, or are considering it, take a look at Problems with the Patch to learn more. And if you've found that your libido seems to have waned since starting the pill, then you'll want to read Birth Control Controlling Your Sex Drive?
Birth Control Comparisons
Birth Control Education
When Contraception Fails
Problems with the Patch
Birth Control Controlling Your Sex Drive?
Responsible Sex: Making good choices about sex is often easier said than done. Read our article about responsible sexual choices and you to understand the issues related to your choice to become sexually active. Abstinence is the best way to prevent unplanned pregnancy and sexually transmitted disease, but there are many reasons why waiting is hard, especially when it seems like sex is everywhere. A beauty queen tells us why she is choosing to save sex until her wedding night.
Sexuality and You
Responsible Sexual Choices
Sex and Single Adults
Sex and Marriage
12 Types of Men to Avoid
Barriers to Abstinence
Beauty Queen Abstains
The Future of Birth Control: As technology continues to advance, the science of contraception advances as well. Fertility monitors are small computers widely used in Europe to predict when it is safe to have sex, without any drugs or devices. A new birth control pill was just developed that offers freedom from menstruation. Also read about other new methods under development.
A New Birth Control Pill
Other Methods in Development
Religious Views: For many people, their choices surrounding family planning revolve around their religious beliefs. But do all religions have the same viewpoint when it comes to procreation as well as sex both inside and outside of the institution of marriage? Here we look at common religions, including Catholicism, Judaism, and Islam, and their values when it comes to sex, birth control, and abortion.
Get the answers to all of your birth control questions in our birth control forum.