Compare Contraceptive Methods – Find My Method
 

Compare Methods

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Last modified on August 25th, 2020

 

What separates one contraceptive method from another?

Select up to 6 contraceptive methods for a side-by-side comparison and scroll down to see the results.

  • Hormonal IUD
  • Non hormonal IUD
  • Implant
  • The Pill
  • The Injectable
  • The Patch
  • The Ring
  • External Condom (Male)
  • Internal Condom (Female Condom)
  • Emergency Contraception Pill
  • Sterilization
  • Cervical Cap
  • Diaphragm
  • Spermicide
  • Sponge
  • Fertility Awareness
  • Withdrawal
  • Not Right Now

Effectiveness: Very effective

STI prevention: Protects me from pregnancy only

Easy to hide: No one will know

Ease of use: Get it and forget it

Long lasting protection: 3 to 7 years

Who can use it?: For female bodies

Hormones?: Hormonal

Most common side effects: Some pain during insertion. After insertion you may experience: spotting, cramping, lighter periods, or no periods. Side effects are not harmful.

Effectiveness: Very effective

STI prevention: Protects me from pregnancy only

Easy to hide: No one will know

Ease of use: Get it and forget it

Long lasting protection: 12 years. It also works as emergency contraception.

Who can use it?: For female bodies

Hormones?: Hormone-free

Most common side effects: Some pain during insertion. After insertion you may experience heavier periods. Side effects are not harmful.

Effectiveness: Very effective

STI prevention: Protects me from pregnancy only

Easy to hide: Not very visible, except to someone who is looking for it

Ease of use: Get it and forget it

Long lasting protection: 3 to 5 years

Who can use it?: For female bodies

Hormones?: Hormonal

Most common side effects: Unexpected light bleeding or spotting may occur, or monthly period may stop. Side effects are not harmful.

Effectiveness: Very effective

STI prevention: Protects me from pregnancy only

Easy to hide: May be found in your bag!

Ease of use: Regular upkeep - Must take pill daily.

Long lasting protection: No long-lasting protection, only effective with regular daily use.

Who can use it?: For female bodies

Hormones?: Hormonal

Most common side effects: Unexpected light bleeding or spotting may occur. Some women have mild headaches, weight change, upset stomach, especially at first. Side effects are not harmful.

Effectiveness: Very effective

STI prevention: Protects from pregnancy only

Easy to hide: No one will know

Ease of use: Regular upkeep - Must get one injection every 1,2 or 3 months.

Long lasting protection: Long-lasting protection for 1, 2 or 3 months (depending on the types available).

Who can use it?: For female bodies

Hormones?: Hormonal

Most common side effects: Periods usually become lighter and shorter or less frequent. Spotting and unexpected bleeding can occur. Side effects are not harmful. It may cause a delay in getting pregnant after stopping use.

Effectiveness: Very effective

STI prevention: Protects from pregnancy only

Easy to hide: May be found in your bag!

Ease of use: Regular upkeep - Must apply new patch weekly.

Long lasting protection: No long-lasting protection, only effective with regular use. A new patch is applied each week for 3 weeks, followed by a week with no patch.

Who can use it?: For female bodies

Hormones?: Hormonal

Most common side effects: Irregular bleeding for the first few months and then lighter and more regular bleeding may occur. Potential skin irritation. Side effects are not harmful

Effectiveness: Very effective

STI prevention: Protects from pregnancy only

Easy to hide: May be found in your bag!

Ease of use: Regular upkeep - Must replace the ring on time once monthly.

Long lasting protection: No long-lasting protection, only effective with regular use. Keep in place all the time for 3 weeks, followed by a week with no ring in place.

Who can use it?: For female bodies

Hormones?: Hormonal

Most common side effects: Irregular bleeding for the first few months and then lighter and more regular bleeding may occur. Side effects are not harmful

Effectiveness: Moderately effective with typical use.

STI prevention: Protects from pregnancy and STIs

Easy to hide: May be found in your bag!

Ease of use: Must always remember to use before sex.

Long lasting protection: No long-lasting protection. Use every time you have sex

Who can use it?: For male bodies

Hormones?: Hormone-free

Most common side effects: No side effects. Some people may have skin irritations or allergic reactions.

Effectiveness: Moderately effective with typical use.

STI prevention: Protects from pregnancy and STIs

Easy to hide: May be found in your bag!

Ease of use: Must always remember to use before sex.

Long lasting protection: No long-lasting protection. Use every time you have sex

Who can use it?: For female bodies

Hormones?: Hormone-free

Most common side effects: No side effects. Some people may have skin irritations or allergic reactions.

Effectiveness: Very effective. Regular methods offer more certainty

STI prevention: Protects from pregnancy only

Easy to hide: May be found in your bag.

Ease of use: You are in charge, take as soon as possible.

Long lasting protection: No. Take within 5 days if you had unprotected sex.

Who can use it?: For female bodies

Hormones?: Hormonal

Most common side effects: May cause nausea and vomiting, slight irregular vaginal bleeding and fatigue. Side effects are not harmful.

Effectiveness: Very effective

STI prevention: Protects from pregnancy only

Easy to hide: No one will know

Ease of use: Get it and forget it

Long lasting protection: Permanent, irreversible

Who can use it?: Females and males. For female bodies it is known as tubal ligation, and for male bodies it is known as vasectomy.

Hormones?: Hormone-free, requires a surgical procedure

Most common side effects: Female sterilization has no long-term side effects. Male sterilization can cause temporary pain, swelling, or bruising, and a few man have lasting mild pain. Both forms of sterilization have no effect on sexual ability or sensation during sex.

Effectiveness: Low effectiveness

STI prevention: Protects from pregnancy only

Easy to hide: May be found in your bag!

Ease of use: Must always remember to use before sex.

Long lasting protection: No long-lasting protection. Comes in different sizes and requires fitting by a trained provider

Who can use it?: For female bodies

Hormones?: Hormone-free

Most common side effects: Potential irritation. Side effects are not harmful

Effectiveness: Moderately effective with typical use. Recommended to use with spermicide.

STI prevention: Protects from pregnancy only

Easy to hide: May be found in your bag!

Ease of use: Must always remember to use before sex.

Long lasting protection: No long-lasting protection. May come in different sizes and/or require fitting by a trained provider.

Who can use it?: For female bodies

Hormones?: Hormone-free

Most common side effects: Potential irritation. Side effects are not harmful

Effectiveness: Low effectiveness.

STI prevention: Protects from pregnancy only

Easy to hide: May be found in your bag!

Ease of use: Must always remember to use before sex.

Long lasting protection: No long-lasting protection, but offers better pregnancy protection as compared to no method at all.

Who can use it?: For female bodies

Hormones?: Hormone-free

Most common side effects: No side effects

Effectiveness: Low effectiveness

STI prevention: Protects from pregnancy only

Easy to hide: May be found in your bag!

Ease of use: Must always remember to use before sex.

Long lasting protection: No long-lasting protection, but offers better pregnancy protection as compared to no method at all.

Who can use it?: For female bodies

Hormones?: Hormone-free

Most common side effects: No side effects

Effectiveness: User dependent. Other methods offer higher effectiveness.

STI prevention: Protects from pregnancy only

Easy to hide: Requires no supplies, and no clinic or pharmacy visit

Ease of use: You must monitor your body every day.

Long lasting protection: Offers better pregnancy protection than no method at all

Who can use it?: For female bodies

Hormones?: Hormone-free

Most common side effects: No side effects

Effectiveness: Low effectiveness

STI prevention: Protects from pregnancy only

Easy to hide: Requires no supplies, and no clinic or pharmacy visit

Ease of use: Prone to error, must withdraw prior to releasing any sperm.

Long lasting protection: No long-lasting protection, but offers better pregnancy protection as compared to no method at all.

Who can use it?: For male bodies

Hormones?: Hormone-free

Most common side effects: No side effects

Effectiveness: Very effective

STI prevention: Pregnancy and STIs

Easy to hide: No one will know

Ease of use: Requires full commitment

Long lasting protection: Up to when you decide

Who can use it?: Any person can use it

Hormones?: Hormone-free

Most common side effects: No side effects


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