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By Mayo Clinic Health System staff
Choosing the right birth control can be tricky. Many factors go into selecting the option that’s right for you.
Our OB-GYN specialists outline popular birth control methods to help you determine what best fits your pregnancy prevention goals and your options for accomplishing them:
For predictable bleeding, choose an estrogen/progesterone combination available as an oral pill, patch or vaginal ring. Doses must be taken daily, weekly or monthly. Missing a dose increases pregnancy risk.
Lighter or not bleeding
Choose a progesterone-only option for light or no bleeding and less frequent administration. These are available as an injection, implant or IUD, lasting from three months up to five years. There is a chance for break-through bleeding with these options.
Highly effective pregnancy prevention
Long-lasting reversible contraception is available as an implant, or hormonal or copper IUD, lasting from three to 10 years. These options are just as effective as permanent options, but are reversible if you decide to become pregnant in the future.
Permanent birth control
If you’re ready for permanent pregnancy prevention, male and female sterilization, including vasectomy and tubal ligation are available. There is no risk of pregnancy, but these options aren’t reversible.
Consult with your health care provider about your medical history and how it affects your birth control choice.