Despite the evidence that contraceptive methods reduce the rate of unintended pregnancies and prevent unsafe abortions worldwide, there are still 270 million women of reproductive age in the world with an unmet need for contraceptives. This is due to different factors ranging from inaccessibility and socio-cultural barriers to personal reasons.
If you are wondering why we even need contraceptives in the first place, here is a list of benefits they have not just for you as a person but for your partner and the wider society you live in.
1) Reduced risk of unintended pregnancy
So you are not ready to go through the hassle of pregnancy or parenting but want to have an active sex life? Getting on a suitable contraceptive method is the wise thing to do. When used the right way, most contraceptives are 90 – 99% effective in preventing pregnancy.
Additionally, using contraceptive methods to prevent an unintended pregnancy means you may not have to get an abortion. This can be quite relieving, especially if you live in a place with restrictive abortion laws that put you at risk of an unsafe abortion.
Getting pregnant may be inevitable if you keep having unprotected sex, so think about all the stress and unexpected cost of childcare contraceptive use can save you from.
2) Better sex
Exciting, right? Contraceptive methods are here to make that happen.
3) Disease prevention
Having unprotected sex puts you at risk of contracting sexually-transmitted infections and diseases (STIs/STDs). Guard yourself against this by using the barrier forms of contraceptives, i.e condoms, while having penetrative sex, and dental dams for oral sex.
All other contraceptive methods besides these two can only prevent pregnancy, not STIs/STDs.
4) Prevent pregnancy complications and deaths
Further, 12 million girls – between the ages of 15 and 19 years – give birth in the developing countries. Early pregnancies have serious health consequences such as anaemia, low birth weight, preeclampsia/eclampsia, preterm labour, and stillbirth; and these complications are the leading cause of death among the girls globally.
Contraceptive use can prevent this burden on teenage reproductive systems, which they are not ready for; and ultimately reduce complications and mortality.
5) Family planning
The use of contraceptive methods aids women in proper planning for pregnancy, childbirth and parenthood – mentally, medically, and financially. This helps in providing adequate care for the baby before and after birth. Such a child has a great chance of being healthy and raised in a homely environment.
Contraceptive methods also help with child spacing, which leaves a decent gap between the children a person has and prevents the burden of having to care for more than one infant at once.
6) Economic empowerment
Having control over one’s fertility and exercising reproductive rights is empowering. Unintended pregnancy and unspaced childbirth have socioeconomic consequences that majorly affect women and girls all around the world.
Many women and girls are stuck in the cycle of poverty and unable to attain career growth due to unplanned pregnancy and the stress of parenting. Thousands of teenage girls around the world drop out of school and are unable to continue their formal education, which reduces their chances of accessing opportunities available to their peers.
Contraceptive methods empower women and girls and keeps them from having unplanned pregnancy, which may limit them from attaining their potential.
7) Population control
The United Nations estimates that the world population is expected to reach 8.6 billion in 2030, 9.8 billion in 2050 and 11.2 billion in 2100. This may just be way more than what the earth can support.
Prevention of overpopulation helps solve social and economic problems because it reduces pressure on the environment and available resources. And contraceptive use is key to curbing population explosion.
Do you have something to share? Leave your comments below, contact us on our social media platforms: Facebook, Instagram and Twitter or send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on contraception, visit findmymethod.org
About the author: Emitomo Tobi Nimisire is a writer, sexual and reproductive health and rights advocate, and communications strategist. She blogs at nimisire.wordpress.com.