Birth Control

If you don't want to get pregnant - or get your partner pregnant - you need to use birth control, also called contraception or family planning. There are lots different types of birth control methods. Another way to avoid getting pregnancy is abstinence.

Facts

Copper IUD

The Copper-T IUD, which is often sold under the name 'Multiload' is a non-hormonal birth control device that sits in your uterus or womb. It’s a t-shaped piece of plastic wrapped with a coil of copper-wire. That's why some people call it the 'coil'.

Hormonal IUD

The hormonal IUD is a small cylinder about as long as a matchstick that is put inside the uterus or womb. It's put in place by a doctor, and can stay in the body for up to five years. It works by giving off a steady low dose of the hormone progestogen (levonorgestrel).

IUDs

An intrauterine device (IUD) is a small contraceptive device which is inserted into the uterus. It is a long-term reversible type of contraception and is considered the most effective reversible birth control on the market.

Condoms

A condom is a rubber sheath that fits over the penis to stop sperm from getting into the vagina. It's like a very thin and stretchy tube-shaped bag, with a teat at the closed end to collect the sperm.

Outercourse

Outercourse can mean different things to different people. Some people consider outercourse as any sex play without sexual intercourse (when a man inserts his penis into a woman’s vagina). For others, outercourse means sex play without any penetration (oral, anal, vaginal).

Abstinence

In general, abstinence means not having sexual intercourse. You can enjoy being sexual and intimate without having sexual intercourse.

Condoms

A rubber sheath that fits over the penis and stops sperm from getting into the vagina. It's like a very thin and stretchy tube-shaped bag, with a teat at the closed end to collect the sperm.

The pill

It’s a pill that women swallow every day. Combined birth control pills contain two hormones, estrogen and progestin. 'Mini-pills', or progestin-only pills, only contain progestin.

Withdrawal

Withdrawal is when a man pulls his penis out of a woman’s vagina before he ejaculates – the moment where semen comes out of his penis. It’s also known as the pull out method or coitus interruptus.

Emergency contraception

You’ve had intercourse without using contraception, even though you don’t want to be pregnant. Or you think something could have gone wrong with your contraception – perhaps you forgot to take your pill, or a condom burst. What can you do?