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Birth Control

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What is Birth Control?

Birth control can mean abstinence. Abstinence is deciding not to do something, and abstaining from having sexual intercourse will ensure that pregnancy does not occur. Birth control can also mean using a method of contraception to ensure that pregnancy does not occur when you do have sexual intercourse.

Most Commonly Used and Effective Methods of Birth Control (when used correctly)

1. Birth Control Pill: an estrogen and/or progestin hormone pill that a woman takes every day to prevent ovulation and pregnancy. Protects 99.7 % against pregnancy only, not STDs. Risks are nausea, weight change and in rare cases blood clots.

2. The Patch (Ortho Evra): a stick hormone patch worn on the butt, belly, or arm for three weeks out of the month. Protects 99.7% against pregnancy, not STDs. Risks are same as the Pill, plus skin irritation.

3. The Shot (Depo-Provera): a shot of hormones injected into a womanÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦s arm or buttocks every three months. Protects 99.7% against pregnancy, ovulation, not STDs. Risks are the same as Pill, but a higher risk of weight gain.

4. The Ring ( NuvaRing): a ring inserted and left in the vagina that releases estrogen and progestin. Protects 99.7% against pregnancy, not STDs. Risks are same as the Pill, plus vaginal irritation or infections.

5. Male Condom: a stretchy latex or polyurethane material that covers the penis before sex. Protects 98% against pregnancy, and is the only form of birth control that help protect against most STDs (itÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦s less effective against skin STDs like herpes). Risks are that they can break, and some people are allergic to latex.

6. Female Condom: a polyurethane liner thatÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦s inserted into the vagina before sex. Protects 95% against pregnancy, STDs, but isnÐ'ÐŽÐ'¦t



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