What Is Birth Control?
What Are Types of Birth Control?
There are numerous types of birth control. Some types of birth control are used by women, and some types are used by men. Some types work to prevent pregnancy long-term or permanently, and others must be used each time you have sexual intercourse. Some are available over-the-counter (OTC) and others are available only by prescription.
- Barrier methods
- Condoms, male and female
- Pericoital birth control, used at the time of sex
- Cervical caps
- Spermicidal sponges
- Hormonal birth control
- Long-acting birth control
- Permanent procedures
- Emergency contraception, used right after unprotected intercourse
- “Morning after” pills
- Hormonal (Plan B One-Step, available without a prescription)
- Nonhormonal (Ella)
- “Natural” birth control
What Are Side Effects of Birth Control?
Side effects of birth control depend on which method you use.
Side effects of barrier methods and pericoital birth control are minimal. Products containing spermicides may cause local irritation. Spermicide-coated condoms are associated with an increased risk of urinary tract infections (UTIs) in female partners.
- Side effects of hormonal birth control such as the pill, patch, ring, or injection include:
Side effects of long-acting birth control include:
- Copper-containing intrauterine device (IUD)
- Heavier menstrual period
- More cramps during periods
- Levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine device (IUD)
- Decreases menstrual bleeding (some women stop having periods completely)
- Single-rod progestin implant (Nexplanon)
- Irregular bleeding
Side effects of permanent procedures such as vasectomy (for men) and tubal ligation, (for women) include:
- Surgical risks:
- Injury to other organs
- Internal bleeding
- Problems related to anesthesia
Side effects of emergency contraception, used right after unprotected intercourse include: