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Are You Using the Best Birth Control for You?


With so many options available for birth control (BC), selecting the right one can be daunting. About 60% of women of reproductive age use contraceptives—and of those, 72% use hormonal methods like the birth control pill, patch, implant, injectable, vaginal ring, intrauterine device (IUDs), and non-hormonal methods. And this might come as a surprise, but the remainder opt for the permanent option of surgery (22% for women, 7% for men) that results in sterilization.

In all things BC, it’s important to realize: The BC you use today might not be the best option for you next month, next year, or 10 years from now. “If you choose a method and it doesn’t work for you, talk to your provider about another choice. And needs change, so revisit your choice regularly. A method you choose at 17 may well not be the right method for you at 23,” says Mary Jane Minkin, M.D., clinical professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive sciences at Yale School of Medicine in New Haven, CT.

We talked to her and several other leading obstetrician-gynecologists to develop this quiz that will help you discover the BC method that might be right for you, right now.