There are lots of options for birth control to help avoid unplanned pregnancy. Check out this section to learn about your contraceptive options and where to access them.

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It is important for many young people to avoid an unplanned pregnancy. There are many birth control options available (also known as contraception). Some are more effective than others and some have side effects. Some cost less and others are easier to use. It is important to think about what is important to you when deciding what’s best for you. For example, if you are a heavy smoker, you might opt for a non-hormonal option like condoms. If you have sex often and convenience is important, you might choose an IUD.

There may be other medical factors that affect your birth control choice. Talk to a doctor or nurse about what options are best for you.

The image below describes some common birth control options.

This infographic lists the various forms of birth control.

It is important to understand how and when a person can become pregnant so you can protect yourself. A common myth is that you can’t get pregnant if you have sex while on your period. But, that is not true.  It is possible to get pregnant during your period. You can learn more about fertility and pregnancy at Options for Sexual Health.

If possible, talk to your partner(s) about birth control before you decide to have sex. Then always use birth control once you do. You can even talk about contraception when you talk about STIs.

Remember that preventing a pregnancy is not only the responsibility of the person who can get pregnant. All partners play a part in protecting against pregnancy.

If you are worried about an unplanned pregnancy, you need to know that emergency options are available. These include the emergency contraception pill or an emergency IUD. You can learn more about emergency contraception here.

If you do get pregnant, look for support that is reliable and unbiased. Some organizations might seem to be unbiased and supportive, but have a political agenda and might try to influence your decision. You can find reliable information, support and abortion services through Options for Sexual Health.

Tip: Make plans for birth control before you are in the heat of the moment, because it can be hard to stop or slow down. It will be easier to stick with the plan if you are prepared and have the conversation ahead of time.

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