Answers to Frequently Asked Questions About...
Which birth control method is right for me?
Emergency contraception (sometimes called the "morning after pill") can give you a second chance to prevent pregnancy after sex. But it is not as effective as birth control that’s used before or during sex, like the pill or condoms. Emergency contraceptives also do not protect against sexually transmitted infections, like HIV (only condoms do). That’s why you shouldn’t use emergency contraception as your only protection against pregnancy.
The good news is that you can choose from dozens of kinds of birth control today. Figuring out which contraceptive method is best for you, however, can be tricky. And it can change depending on what’s going on in your life. Which type of contraception you choose may depend on the type of relationship you are in, how often you have sex, or when you have to use the birth control method (once a month, once a week, every day, or just right before you have sex). How soon you might want to have children can also make a difference. Or you might have a health condition that limits your birth control options.
If you’re wondering which kind of contraception might fit your lifestyle or health needs, there are some great online tools to help you choose:
- Method Match, maintained by the Association of Reproductive Health Professionals (which is also a co-sponsor of this website), helps you choose the method that is best for your lifestyle.
- Bedsider, from the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unintended Pregnancy, offers detailed information about different methods as well as birth control and appointment reminders
- My Contraception Tool is another interactive, free online tool that can help you find the best contraceptive method for you.