What is non-hormonal birth control?
- Condoms: these are the most common barrier method. A condom is a sleeve of thin latex that rolls on over the penis. Condoms trap the sperm contained in the ejaculate fluid (or cum) to prevent pregnancy.
- Internal condoms: a sleeve of thin material that goes into the vagina or anus, also known as a female condom. These can be more expensive and harder to find than condoms. They can be useful if you or your partner have difficulty with condoms.
- Dental Dams: these are thin sheets of latex that you can place over a vulva or anus before having oral sex. These barriers don’t prevent pregnancy, but they can help reduce your risk of giving or getting an STI!
Copper IUDs (like Paraguard) are the only type of IUD that is non-hormonal. IUD stands for intrauterine device. Instead of hormones, they contain copper. Copper can damage sperm, which prevents them from fertilizing eggs. A doctor inserts an IUD into the uterus. Copper IUDs are over 99% effective, and they can also be used as emergency contraception if you get one inserted no more than 5 days after having unprotected sex.
The pull-out method, or withdrawal, is a kind of birth control used during vaginal sex. It involves someone pulling their penis out of a vagina before ejaculation (orgasm). With perfect use, pulling out can be 96% effective in preventing pregnancy. But many people can make mistakes, like pulling out too late, not realizing they’ve started ejaculating, or ejaculating too early. So pulling out is 73% effective with typical use.
Diaphragms and cervical caps
Vasectomy and tubal ligation
- A tubal ligation is a procedure for some with a uterus and is sometimes referred to as “getting your tubes tied”. The tubes referred to are the fallopian tubes. When an egg is released, it travels through the fallopian tubes to the uterus where it can be fertilized. A tubal ligation blocks or cuts the tubes and prevents the egg from reaching the uterus. Major surgery is needed to reverse the procedure, and it’s not always effective. Because of this, tubal litigation only happens when someone is sure that they won’t want to be pregnant in the future.
- A vasectomy is a surgical procedure for people with penises. A doctor cuts the tubes in the penis that carry sperm. It’s a quick and minimally-invasive procedure. It’s also intended to be permanent and usually it’s not possible to reverse a vasectomy. Doctors may tell someone who wants a vasectomy to think about it beforehand.
All About Fertility Awareness Method – Scarleteen
A detailed look at how to best track ovulation as a method of preventing unwanted pregnancy or increasing the odds of pregnancy.
Birth Control Bingo – Scarleteen
Scarleteens article takes you through the in’s and out’s of contraceptive in the style of “Birth Control Bingo”. Provides a thorough understanding of key concepts and terminology
Birth Control Comparison Chart and Pregnancy Rates
US-based Kidhealth.org lists and compares different types of birth control including information on how effective they are and if they also protect against STIs.
Birth Control FAQ – Mayo Clinic
Some frequently asked questions and answers about birth control.
Birth Control Methods: How Well Do They Work?
A comparison chart for the different kinds of birth control.
Birth Control Options – OptBC
Options for Sexual Health provides an in-depth view at the contraception options available in Canada, including their effectiveness, benefits, drawbacks, and reccomendations.
Barriers: How to Keep Other People’s Body Fluids Out of Your Body
Scarleteen’s article delineating some of the common barrier methods, the importance, and step-by-step diagrams of how to use them. Includes three ways to make barriers easier.
Contraception – Sex & U
All about contraception, aka birth control. Contains pages on emergency, hormonal, non-hormonal, and natural contraception.
Planned Parenthood: Birth Control
This US-specific list links to all the kinds of birth control and their latest information, effectiveness, pros and cons, and more.