Popular Birth Control Methods

by Sharon Hopkins

Pregnancy and parenthood are life-altering events, which is why they should be well-thought out and planned by both the partners. This definitely does not mean that you need to practice a lifestyle of abstinence, till you are ready to become a parent. There are several popular birth control methods that you and your partner can use, to enjoy an active and healthy sex life, while minimizing the risks of pregnancy. These pregnancy control options can be broadly classified into Permanent methods and Reversible methods.

Like the name suggests, permanent pregnancy control methods ensure that you cannot conceive in the future. Therefore, these methods are appropriate for you, in case you are absolutely sure that you do not want to have a baby. The permanent pregnancy control methods that are 99% effective at preventing pregnancy include:

  • Tubal Litigation: Also known as "tying of the tubes" this is a surgical procedure that needs to be conducted at a hospital. During the surgery, your doctor will tie up or close your fallopian tubes, so that the sperm cannot fertilize the eggs after sexual intercourse.
  • Trans-cervical Sterilization: Though this method is permanent, it takes about three months, for it to be effective, so you will need to use an alternate birth control method till then. During this surgery your doctor will use a thin tube to thread a tiny device into each of your fallopian tubes. However, there are a few other health problems associated with this method.
  • Vasectomy: Male sterilization or a vasectomy is an operation that is performed on men, to keep their sperm from entering the penis. Since the ejaculated semen does not contain any sperm, pregnancy is not a possible outcome.

Reversible methods of birth control usually only prevent pregnancy till the time you use them, or maybe even for a short while afterward. While there are no best birth control options as such, some methods are more effective than the others. The common reversible options to prevent pregnancy include:

Intrauterine Contraception

  • Copper T Intrauterine device, which is 99% effective
  • Levonorgestrel intrauterine system, which is 99% effective

Hormonal Methods

  • Arm implants, which are 99% effective
  • Injections or shots, which are 94% to 99% effective
  • Oral contraceptive or birth control pills, which are 91% to 99% effective
  • Skin patch, which is 91% to 99% effective
  • Vaginal contraceptive ring, which is 91% to 99% effective
  • Emergency contraception (to be used only rare and in cases of emergency)

Barrier Methods

  • Male condoms, which are 82% to 98% effective
  • Female condoms, which are 79% to 95% effective
  • Diaphragms. which are 84% to 94% effective
  • Spermicides, which are 72% to 82% effective

Some women also try to adopt natural birth control methods, by learning about their monthly fertility patterns and having sexual intercourse only on those days, when the risks of getting pregnant are low. However, this method is only suitable for women who have a regular menstrual cycle. Natural birth control methods can be 75% to 96% effective.

Do bear in mind that most pregnancy control methods are only effective if they are used correctly. Not all the birth control methods mentioned above are suitable for everyone. Remember that these are not 100% definite ways to prevent pregnancy. Besides this, the above mentioned methods have pros and cons that should be discussed with the doctor.


  1. http://www.womenshealth.gov/publications/our-publications/fact-sheet/birth-control-methods.cfm
  2. http://www.fda.gov/forconsumers/byaudience/forwomen/ucm118465.htm
  3. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/birthcontrol.html

Warning: The reader of this article should exercise all precautionary measures while following instructions on the home remedies from this article. Avoid using any of these products if you are allergic to it. The responsibility lies with the reader and not with the site or the writer.
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