6 Birth Control Options

  • Medical Author:
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

  • Medical Editor: Jerry R. Balentine, DO, FACEP
    Jerry R. Balentine, DO, FACEP

    Jerry R. Balentine, DO, FACEP

    Dr. Balentine received his undergraduate degree from McDaniel College in Westminster, Maryland. He attended medical school at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine graduating in1983. He completed his internship at St. Joseph's Hospital in Philadelphia and his Emergency Medicine residency at Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center in the Bronx, where he served as chief resident.

Quick GuideBirth Control Methods, Side Effects, Effectiveness

Birth Control Methods, Side Effects, Effectiveness

How long does it take for birth control to begin working?

  • Some kinds of birth control start to work with the first use, such as barrier methods.
  • Hormonal methods of birth control such as pills, implants, or the patch may not begin working immediately.
  • Their effectiveness depends upon the time in your monthly cycle when you begin using the contraception.
  • Sometimes it is recommended that women use an alternate method of contraception for the first week after beginning the pill or hormonal contraception.

Can you get pregnant on birth control?

There is no form of birth control that is 100% effective, so it is possible to get pregnant while using most types of birth control. However, many types of birth control, when used correctly, are highly effective in preventing pregnancy. For example, the birth control pill is over 99% effective in preventing pregnancy when taken correctly. For all forms of birth control it is important to have a basic understanding how they work and how to use them correctly. Continue Reading

Reviewed on 4/26/2016
References
REFERENCES:

womenshealth.gov. Birth control methods fact sheet.

CDC.gov. Unintended pregnancy prevention.

IMAGES:

1. Getty Images

2. Getty Images

3. iStock

4. iStock

5. Getty Images

6. Getty Images

7. Getty Images

8. iStock

9. Getty Images

10. iStock

Subscribe to MedicineNet's Newsletters

Get the latest health and medical information delivered direct to your inbox!

By clicking Submit, I agree to the MedicineNet's Terms & Conditions & Privacy Policy and understand that I may opt out of MedicineNet's subscriptions at any time.

VIEW PATIENT COMMENTS
  • Birth Control Methods - Types

    What type of birth control do you find most comfortable and effective?

    Post View 1 Comment
  • Birth Control Methods: Hormonal

    What type of hormonal birth control are you taking, or have you taken in the past; and what if any side effects did you experience?

    Post
  • Birth Control Methods: IUD

    Please share your experience with the IUD birth control method.

    Post View 1 Comment
  • Birth Control Methods: Surgical Sterilization

    Please share your experience with tubal ligation or vasectomy.

    Post
  • Birth Control Options - Experience

    Please share your experience with types of birth control.

    Post

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors