Choosing a Birth Control Method

We’re here to support you with accurate information and professional advice in choosing a birth control method that works best for you. We understand that everyone is different and may have different birth control needs.

Things to think about when choosing a method:

  • Which one is safe for me?
  • Which one will be easy to use consistently and correctly?
  • Which one is comfortable to use for me and my partner(s)?
  • Which one is affordable and easy to get?
  • How will I protect myself and my partner(s) from sexually transmitted infections (STIs)?

Types of Birth Control

There are many different types of birth control available. We can help you select a method that will work best for you.

  • Long-acting reversible methods: includes IUDs and the implant, which can last up to 12 years depending on the method
  • Hormonal methods: includes the Depo shot, vaginal ring, birth control patch, and birth control pills
  • Non-hormonal barrier methods: includes the internal and external condom, diaphragm, and the sponge
  • Behavioral methods: includes abstinence and fertility-based awareness methods
  • Emergency or back-up methods: birth control which can be used up to 5 days (ideally, as soon as possible) after vaginal sex where birth control wasn’t used or may not have worked to prevent pregnancy. These include the emergency contraceptive pill and copper IUD.
  • Permanent methods: includes tubal ligation (“tying your tubes”) and vasectomy. These procedures are not available at our clinics, but we can share information about them and refer you to a provider who offers them.

For an overview of each method, check out Beforeplay.org or visit Bedsider. For help finding a method that will work best for you, make an appointment with one of our Nurse Practitioners.