Birth Control - Teens and Birth Control
Whether you are male or
female, your life can suddenly be changed forever by pregnancy or a
sexually transmitted infection (STI). Think for a moment
what this would be like for you.
The most dependable way to
prevent pregnancy and STI infection is not to have sexual intercourse. This is
If you do not choose abstinence and are
sexually active, always be prepared. To protect yourself and your future, think
birth control methods and STI protection.
Never have sex without protection. Using condoms will
reduce your risk of getting an STI.
Even a single act of sexual intercourse can lead to pregnancy or an
Take charge of your health and your future
you plan not to have sex until you're older, take a little time to learn and
- Which birth control methods are
- Which birth control methods you know you would be able to count on every time you'd need
- How to use a condom to avoid getting or spreading a sexually
transmitted infection, including
HIV. (Some STIs can be spread through oral sex as well
as through intercourse.) If you are sexually active, male or female, always have a condom with you. Don't ever depend on someone else to have a condom when you need it.
- How to use a combination of
methods for the best protection against pregnancy and
sexually transmitted infections.
It may not be easy to talk about sexual activity and
birth control, but it is important that you know how to practice safer sex.
Hopefully, you have a parent, school or church counselor, or health
professional that you feel comfortable talking to. Organizations such as
Planned Parenthood are private, confidential resources for learning how to be
both sexual and responsible. See the Planned Parenthood website for teens at
www.teenwire.com, or check your telephone listings for the
Planned Parenthood office near you.
The best birth control methods for you are those that are easy for you to use (or are
already in effect) each time you have intercourse. Follow up regularly with a
health professional to make sure that your birth control method is working
effectively for you. And if you have any side effects that are making it hard
for you to use the method as directed, choose a different method.
If you have a long-term (chronic) illness or a disability, talk to a
health professional about which birth control choices are best for you.