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  • Contraceptives can help you prevent unwanted pregnancies.
  • When it comes to choosing a method of contraception, understanding the pros and cons of each method is important.
  • While you may have many options to choose from, you should choose a method that best suits your health.
  • You have the right to use contraceptives without permission from your parents and partner.

 

TYPES OF CONTRACEPTION AVAILABLE 

1. Male & Female Condoms 

Condoms are the only single method that offers dual protection. Condoms are free of charge at clinics and are -affordable at some pharmacies and shops.

Pros

  • Condoms can protect you against STIs.
  • It prevents unwanted pregnancies.
  • Condoms are free and easily accessible.

Cons

  • Condoms can break.
  • You may have an allergic reaction to latex condoms.
  • You need to find the right size as a bigger size can slip off.

 

2. Hormone Patches 

This contraceptive is a sticker with three layers. It thickens your cervical mucus and prevents sperm from entering your womb. You can apply it to your lower and upper body, but not around your breasts.

Pros

  • It can prevent menstrual cramps.
  • It helps to prevent acne.
  • It is easy to use.

Cons

  • It does not protect against STIs.
  • If your patch is exposed to a lot of light, it may not be as effective.
  • You may get blood clots, but there is very little chance of that happening.

 

3. Oral contraception for women (the pill) 

These pills come in a packet of 28 and you should take them once daily at the same time. There are two main types: combined oral contraceptive (COC) pills and progestogen-only contraceptive (POP) pills.

Pros

  • The pill can offer relief from painful menstrual cramps.
  • It can reduce acne.

Cons

  • It does not protect against STIs.
  • You may experience migraines and gain weight.
  • It also increases your risk of suffering a stroke.

4. Contraceptive injection for women

There are two types: Nur-Isterate, which is given every two months (eight weeks) and Depo Provera or Petogen (DMPA) which is given every three months (12 weeks).

Pros

  • You don’t need to remember to take it every day.
  • It is effective in preventing pregnancy.
  • It gives protection against womb cancer.

Cons

  • You may have an irregular menstrual cycle.
  • Fertility may only return a few weeks after you stop the injection.
  • You can gain weight.

5. Intrauterine device (IUD) 

An IUD is a small device that is put into a women’s uterus (womb).

Pros

  • The UID can prevent pregnancy for at least five years.
  • The device can be removed at any time.
  • It can reduce menstrual bleeding.

Cons

  • It can increase pain when you’re menstruating.
  • You may experience painful headaches and backaches.
  • It doesn not protect against STIs.

6. Emergency Contraception 

You can use this to prevent pregnancy after unprotected sex. If you suspect that the contraception used during sexual intercourse did not work properly, you should also use it. Copper IUDs are also used for emergency contraception.

Pros

  • It’s available at most pharmacies.
  • You don’t need a prescription.
  • It is highly effective.

Cons

  • You may experience nausea, headaches and fatigue after using the pill.
  • It does not protect against STIs.
  • You have have abdominal pain after using it.

7. Male and female Sterilization 

This is a permanent contraceptive method for both women and men. Before you receive this treatment,  counselling would be provided by a Health Care Practitioner.

Pros

  • It is a short and simple procedure.
  • It’s free at some health care facilities.
  • It protects against pregnancy

Cons

  • It does not prevent STIs.
  • The process can be reversed, but it doesn’t mean that you’ll be able to fall pregnant again.

You may experience some pain but should see your doctor for treatment.