Methods and Access
- Couples who do not use any form of birth control have an 85% chance of encountering a pregnancy within a year
- More than 99% of women ages 15–44 who have ever had vaginal sex have used at least one form of birth control
- Most popular forms of birth control: the pill (25.9%), female sterilization (25.1%), male condom (15.3%), and IUD (10.3%)
- About 4 out of every 5 sexually active women have used the pill
- 82% of teenage women at risk of unintended pregnancy use contraceptives
- 53% of these women rely on the pill
- Most effective birth control: implant, IUD, abstinence, or sterilization
- Most cost-effective prescription birth control: the pill, but the IUD, implant, or shot can also save you money by preventing unplanned pregnancy at a higher efficiency if you are afraid you will not remember to take the pill at the same time every day.
- Protects against STIs: male or female condom, or abstinence
- To compare methods: https://bedsider.org/methods/matrix
- For a list of different forms of birth control: https://bedsider.org/methods
- It is rare to experience side effects from prescription birth controls, but just like any other medicine, they can have some effects. Talk to your doctor about different options if you are experiencing any problems.
- For more info on birth control usage: https://www.guttmacher.org/fact-sheet/contraceptive-use-united-states
How to Access Birth Control
- It is possible to access over-the-counter forms of birth control such as the sponge or an emergency contraceptive such as the day-after pill, but for a more cost-effective method without a prescription, condoms may be your best bet.
- Create an appointment to talk about prescription birth control
- If you are not comfortable talking to your parents about starting on a prescription birth control, know that your prescription may show up on your health insurance bill. So though the prescription may be at little to no cost with insurance, it might be a good idea to talk to your parents about birth control before it’s a surprise to them.