A List of the Different Types of Birth Control Methods

types of birth control pills

There are various types of birth control methods out there, but only a few are well known and commonly used by a big part of the population. If your body is not adjusting well to the type of birth control method that you are currently using, you may want to see your other options. Listed below are ten different types of birth control methods that can be used by men or women. You can discuss these with your doctor so that you will be guided accordingly on what is suitable for you.

The Combination Pill or “The Pill”

It contains two hormones, estrogen and progestin, and works by inhibiting fertility. It contains 28 pills that have to be taken daily at about the same time. The pill is 92% to 99% effective, which is why it is used by more than 100 million women. However, if you are more than 35 years old, have a history of breast cancer, or a smoker, your doctor may not advise you to use this. Some side effects of using the pill are dizziness, headache, weight gain, and changes in mood.

Birth Control Shot

This is an injectable progestin that has to be administered every three months. Birth control shots are also very effective, with a rating of 99.7%. It is ideal for women who often forget to take their pills on time.

Mini Pill

This works just like the ordinary pill, but this only contains progestin that has to be taken for 21 days. After that, you will not take any pills for 7 days before resumption of another 21-day mini pill. Some known side effects are weight gain and soreness of the breasts.


Instead of taking pills orally, the patch only has to be worn on the skin for seven days. You can place it on your buttocks, abdomen, or on your upper body, but avoid the breast area. The patch releases the same hormones found in the combination pill, progestin and estrogen. The hormones are released in the blood stream for seven days, so you have to wear a new patch every week. You have to do this for three consecutive weeks and then stop for a week. This is also very effective, although there have been evidences of ineffectiveness on women who weigh more than 198 pounds. Since it delivers the same hormones as combination pills, you may also experience the same side effects.

Vaginal Ring

This is another way to deliver progestin and estrogen to your body, but through the vagina. It is inserted once a month and taken out on the 21st day. You will stop for seven days before inserting a new one. Aside from the minor side effects similar to those caused by combination pills, the user may also experience some vaginal discharge.

Female Condom

It is a thin pouch that will line the vagina to serve as a barrier for the sperm. Women only have to use this before having intercourse. The ring part of the condom has to cover the outside of the vagina, so that it can be easily twisted before being pulled out. If the woman is wearing this, the man no longer has to wear a condom.


Here is another barrier method of birth control. It is a round rubber that covers the opening of the cervix to stop the sperm from reaching the eggs. This has to be inserted at about 6 hours before intercourse. Spermicide should be used with this for added protection. Do not remove the diaphragm immediately after intercourse. It has to stay inside for another 6 to 8 hours before it is removed. Further, do not leave it inside for more than 24 hours or you may suffer some allergic reaction or irritation.

Intrauterine Device

Commonly known as the IUD, it is a T-shaped device that has to be inserted into the uterus by the doctor. There are two types, the copper IUD, which can last for up to 10 years, and the hormonal IUD, which should be replaced every 5 years.


These come in different forms, like gels, creams, and suppositories. It has to be placed inside the vagina before intercourse and left inside for another 6 to 8 hours afterwards. Spermicides are only 82% effective, which is why it is often used with a male or female condom and other barrier methods.

Male Condom

This is a barrier method worn by men. It is commonly made of latex, which catches the sperm to prevent pregnancy. Male condoms are also very effective and they can also prevent sexually transmitted infections.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.