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Different Types of Contraception That You Should Know

Medically reviewed by Janie-Vi Villamor Ismael-Gorospe, MD · General Practitioner

Written by Nikita Bhalla · Updated Jul 14, 2022

    Different Types of Contraception That You Should Know

    There are numerous methods of birth control. Doctors believe certain sexual practices, devices, surgeries, drugs and agents are the effective types of contraception. These types of contraception are available for both men and women who are willing to prevent pregnancy for a short term or permanent.

    With a wide range of techniques available to prevent pregnancy, the most common are contraceptive pills and condoms. However, there are a few people who are not completely aware of different types that help to prevent pregnancy. 

    Let’s have a look at different types of contraception available until now. 

    Types of Contraception

    Below are the various types of contraception that you must know.

    Natural Birth Control Method

    Traditionally, people did not have any medication or devices to prevent pregnancy. So some men and women would avoid ejaculating inside the vagina. This method is called “Coitus Interruptus.” In this method, a man avoids ejaculating inside the vagina and experiences orgasm outside. This method prevents semen deposition inside the vagina. 


    Commonly known as “the shot,” this contraceptive injection contains progestin and estrogen that help to prevent pregnancy. This birth control injection is called Depo-Provera — commonly known as DMPA or Depo Shot. According to doctors, women need to visit a clinic to get this injection. This injection prevents women from releasing an egg. However, although this injection prevents pregnancy, it does not protect against sexually transmitted infections. 


    Sterilization is a surgery for both males and females. 

    • Male Sterilization: Vasectomy is the surgery to sterilise a man. In this method, a surgeon blocks or cuts off the tubes that help ejaculation. According to a survey, this method is 99 per cent effective. 
    • Female Sterilization: Tubal Ligation is the surgery to sterilise a woman. In this method, the doctor burns, blocks, or cuts the fallopian tubes to prevent fertilization. Another female sterilization is “Tubal Implant.” This is where a doctor places a coil inside the fallopian tubes. In a few days, the tissues start to grow around, blocking the tubes. According to doctors, female sterilization is 99 per cent effective.

    Pharmaceutical Types of Contraception

    Pharmaceutical ways range from pills to devices inserted by a doctor to avoid egg fertilisation. However, it is important that you consult a doctor before trying any of these methods. 

    Contraceptive Patch

    It is a transdermal patch that releases synthetic progestin and estrogen hormones. Doctors recommend wearing this patch  for approximately three weeks, generally on the buttocks or lower abdomen. To allow a smooth menstrual period, doctors suggest avoiding wearing the patch in the fourth week.

    Contraceptive Pill

    Doctors suggest consuming a combined contraceptive pill daily. The pill contains two hormones including progestin and oestrogen that help stop ovulation or the release of the egg. Also, this thins the lining of the uterus.

    Morning-After Pill 

    The “morning-after pill” or emergency contraceptive pills may prevent conceiving after sexual intercourse. This contraception prevents fertilization, ovulation, or embryo implantation. Doctors believe that emergency contraception can be used up to 72 hours after unprotected sex.

    Vaginal Ring as Contraception

    This type of contraception is a flexible — plastic ring that releases estrogen and progestin in a low dose over three weeks. This contraceptive vaginal ring thickens the cervical mucus and prevents ovulation. This ring is supposed to insert into the vagina for three weeks and it is removed for a week for a menstrual period.

    The Implant

    It is a rod that contains progestin inserted under a woman’s upper arm skin. This implant helps release progestin slowly which can be effective for around three to four years. This implant is not permanent and can be removed at any time to get pregnant. According to doctors, this method can be 99 per cent effective but cannot protect against STIs.

    The Intrauterine Device (IUD)

    An IUD or a coin is a t-shaped small and flexible device inserted in the uterus by a doctor. An IUD is of two types such as:

    • A hormonal IUD: This IUD contains progestin. This thickens the cervical mucus and narrows uterus walls that prevent egg fertilisation. 
    • A copper IUD: This IUD is made from copper and releases copper in the body. The copper inside the body acts as a spermicide. A copper IUD can last approximately up to 10 years.

    The Intrauterine Device can stay in the body for a long time.

    Types of Contraception Devices

    Devices are nothing but the barriers that prevent the sperm to fertilize an egg. The devices are as follows:

    Cervical Cap as Contraception

    A thimble-shaped, latex rubber cervical cap is a device that fits on the cervix and blocks sperm transmission. According to experts, the cap should contain one-third per cent of spermicide before intercourse. It remains in place by suction. Cervical caps are not as common to use as condoms.

    Male Condoms

    A male condom is an effective barrier that blocks sperm transmission in the vagina. A male condom is widely used after contraceptive pills. Not only it helps prevent pregnancy but it also protects from sexually transmitted diseases. Male condoms are easily available in health stores and supermarkets.

    types of contraception

    Female Condoms

    Women wear femidom or female condom in their vagina. A female condom helps semen transmission and protects from STDs and STIs like a male condom. However, according to a survey, female condoms are not easily available as a male condom.

    The Diaphragm

    A dome-shaped diaphragm is a rubber device inserted inside a vagina and placed over the cervix. The device fits properly behind a woman’s pubic bone. A flexible but firm ring helps press against the vaginal walls.

    Sponge as Contraception

    A sponge is a type of contraception that one inserts inside the vagina. The depression on the sponge is required to place over the cervix. The foam is placed into the vagina using an application that destroys the male sperm. The sponge acts as a blocker to stop sperm transmission. However, the sponge is less effective if a woman already has a baby. 

    Key Takeaways

    Contraception is very important not just to prevent pregnancy but also to protect from several sexually transmitted diseases. However, it is essential that you use these types of contraception correctly.
    You can always look at the package to understand the various ways to use contraception. Also, it is essential that you look at the expiry date, especially while using contraceptive pills, as well as male and female condoms. 
    The best way to understand the types of contraception and how to use them is to consult a physician or an expert. They will guide you properly and correctly.

    Learn more about Contraception here.


    Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

    Medically reviewed by

    Janie-Vi Villamor Ismael-Gorospe, MD

    General Practitioner

    Written by Nikita Bhalla · Updated Jul 14, 2022

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