Let's Talk Birth Control: What Method Is Best for You?

It's easy to get overwhelmed when it comes to choosing the right birth control for you. No matter what reason you’re deciding to start taking birth control for, it’s important to understand what is best for your body and your needs. Always talk to your doctor or go to Planned Parenthood if you ever have questions, but a doctor or Planned Parenthood should be able to address your needs and guide you in the right direction. This is a guide for what type of birth control methods are out there.

  1. 1. Oral Contraceptive Pills

    Oral contraceptives are a very effective way of preventing pregnancy, lightening periods, and helping alleviate period cramps, to name a few benefits. This pill is taken once a day at the same time, and some are estrogen-based, while others are a mix of progesterone and estrogen or even just progesterone based. However, the pill is definitely a high maintenance option because you have to take it around the same time everyday, depending on the hormones that are in the pill

  2. 2. Condoms (Male and Female)

    Condoms are an effective type of birth control if used every time and correctly. For condoms, make sure that there is an air bubble in the wrapper before opening to ensure that it has not been damaged. If it’s damaged, there is a chance you could become pregnant. There are also male and female condoms, but male condoms are more commonly used. You should also always use a condom to protect against STDs!

  3. 3. IUD (Intrauterine Device)

    IUD (intrauterine contraceptive device)

    IUDs are a great choice for those wanting a long-term and extremely low-maintenance option. They are placed inside the uterus and some can last up to ten years. There is a copper IUD that contains no hormones and there are hormone-based IUDs as well. It can be painful to get an IUD, but the pain only lasts for a little bit and device itself is extremely effective. 

  4. 4. The Birth Control Shot (Depo-Provera)

    The birth control shot is another great low-maintenance option. Injected every three months, it effectively prevents pregnancy if done regularly every three months. The injection can be injected into either the arm or buttock. This is a great option if you are looking at birth control more for helping to maintain your period, or even getting it to stop. Most women report after six months to one year after their first injection having no period anymore. 

  5. 5. The Implant

    The implant is very low-maintenance and lasts very long, about three years. The implant is also 99% effective for preventing pregnancy. They make your periods much more manageable and only have one type of hormone, progesterone according to Planned Parenthood. The implant is surgically implanted in the inner upper arm and not noticeable to anyone else. This is a great option for people looking for progesterone-based.

  6. 6. The Patch

    The birth control patch is super effective if used correctly and is a medium-maintenance option. You have to change the patch every week for it to be effective. It contains both estrogen and progesterone. It can also be worn in multiple places and your skin absorbs the hormones released by the patch to protect against pregnancy.

This is a brief overview of birth control methods, and not every method is mentioned in this list. Take this quiz to determine what the best option is for you! Birth control is very personal and every kind isn’t a perfect fit for some people. Definitely talk to a doctor or go to your local Planned Parenthood for questions and to get prescribed a birth control method. Stay safe and healthy!

- Ivie