Overview

There a many different contraception options when having sex - some provide just contraception and others ensure safe sex, explore this page to find out more about contraception options.

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Babies - not ready yet?

Not ready for kids yet? By using a condom, not only are you minimising the risk of transmitting nasties like STIs and BBVs, you're also lowering the risk of pregnancy!

  • Author: YEP CREW
  • Upload Date: 14/2/2011

Awesome stop-motion video created by Steven! Made at Hyperfest 2010 for the YEP Crew

Stories on this Topic

Featured Story (text)

The First Time I Had Sex

The First Time I Had Sex


A work by Annon

The first time I had sex was kind of weird and awkward. I didn't feel really turned on - I just wanted to do it to see what it was like. We had been together for a few months. Took a while with him trying to get the condom on, and then I had to help him to find the right place to put it in! It hurt at first so I told him to slow down. Then it started to feel good but he came quickly and that was it. I can't say I totally enjoyed it, but I thought, at least now I've done it, so I know what everyone's talking about

Click to read the text

What sex was like for the first time. A real story from Love the Good The Bad and The Ugly

  • Author: Annon
  • Upload Date: 2011-01-13

A real story from Love The Good The Bad and The Ugly

Factsheet

Provided by Reach Out

We have partnered with Reach Out to bring you the best factsheet information we can on this topic. Reach Out offers information, support and resources to help young people improve their understanding of mental health issues, develop resilience, and increase their coping skills and help-seeking behaviour.

Contraception Options

There are many different forms of contraception options which can be used wheh having having sex,

Condoms

contraception options when having sex

It is a good idea to use a condom, as they are the only form of contraceptive that protect you against sexually transmitted infections, STI's for short.  Using a condom and water based lubricant every time you have sex means you have less chance of:

  • becoming pregnant
  • getting an STI including HIV/AIDS.

Using a water based lubricant like KY jelly or Wet Stuff each time you use a condom reduces the risk of the condom breaking. Avoid oil-based lubricants such as petroleum jelly (vaseline), massage oil or other body lotions as this can cause the condom to break. When choosing your condoms you can go for either a male or female condom.

The male condom

The male condom is a fine latex sheath, which is worn on an erect or stiff penis. The condom collects the sperm and stops it from entering the vagina and uterus.

How well do they work?

Condoms can be very effective when used properly. To make sure you are using them properly you should:

  • check the use by date
  • use a new one every time you have sex
  • avoid re-using condoms
  • make sure you are putting it on and taking it off the right way.

Side effects

There are no side effects when you use a condom, unless you have an allergy to latex rubber or to the lubricant. This is not common. However, if you do have an allergic reaction you may be able to use a non-latex condom. See female condom section below. For more information about Non-latex condoms contact FP NSW Healthline 1300 658 886 or your local youth friendly doctor.

Advantages versus disadvantages

contraception options when having sex

Image Credit: chrisjohnbeckett | Flickr

Like any other type of contraception using a male condom has both advantages and disadvantages. You may want to think about what they mean for you. Some of the advantages may be:

  • Condoms decrease the risk of pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections including HIV/AIDS.
  • Condoms are easy to find and you don't need a doctor to get them.
  • They don't cost a lot to buy.

One disadvantage of using a condom is that the latex is perishable which means it needs to be kept in a cool place and used before the expiry date. Condoms often break if they are used with oil based lubricants such as massage oil, vaseline, vegetable oil or other oils. It is best to use a water based lubricant such as KY Jelly, Wet Stuff or GLYDE.

Where do you buy condoms?

You can usually get a male condom and water based lubricant at:

  • a supermarket
  • chemist
  • youth health centres
  • sexual health centres
  • FPA health centres
  • vending machines.

The female condom

The female condom also collects the sperm and stops it from entering the vagina and uterus. The female condom is made of non-latex polyurethane and is lubricated with a silicone-based lubricant. Oil based lubricant can also be used with the female condom.

How well does it work?

Like the male condom, female condoms are also good at preventing pregnancy and STI's if they are used properly. It is a good idea to read the instructions on the packet before you use it. This will show you how to put the female condom into the vagina. It is recommended that the female condom be used only once. It is not a good idea to use the male condom with a female condom as this can cause it to tear or move out of place.

Side effects

The only side effect of using a female condom may be having an allergic reaction to the polyurethane or the lubricant. However, this is not common. If you are worried about an allergy you could contact FP NSW Healthline 1300 658 886 or your doctor. Check out your local phone book to find a doctor in your area.

Advantages versus disadvantages

Advantages may be:

  • it can be put in before sex and does not need to be removed straight after sex
  • it reduces the risk of pregnancy and STI's
  • you don't need a doctor to get them.

Some of the disadvantages may be:

  • they are more expensive than the male condom
  • harder to find places to get them
  • they may be harder to use. Knowing your body and being comfortable with it may make it easier to use a female condom.

Where do you the female condom?

You can pick up a female condom from:

  • FPA health centres
  • Sexual Health Centres
  • FP NSW Healthline 1300 658 886.

Pill

contraception options when having sex

image credit: futurowoman | Flickr

The Pill is a common type of contraceptive. There are two main types of Pills.

  • The Combined Pill contains two hormones and stops the ovaries releasing an egg each month.
  • The Progestogen-only Pill, sometimes called the Minipill, has only one hormone and works by mainly changing the mucus at the entrance to the uterus so that sperm cannot pass through to fertilise the egg.

There are many different brands of the pill and it sometimes takes a while to find the one that is right for you. The pill has to be prescribed by a doctor and it is a good idea to talk with your doctor about which pill suits you best.

The combined pill

When taken properly, the combined pill is about 98% effective. The pill does not work as well if:

  • you don't take it regularly
  • you have diarrhoea or are vomiting
  • you are taking it with anti-biotics or other drugs

Advantages versus disadvantages

The pill affects everyone differently. There can be advantages for some people while for others there may be some drawbacks. It is a good idea to talk with your doctor about how the pill may affect you.

Some of the benefits may be:

  • a regular lighter period
  • improvement of acne
  • improvement or absence of PMS (Premenstrual syndrome), which can cause uncomfortable symptoms and mood changes in the days before the period starts.

While some of the disadvantages may be:

  • sore breasts, nausea (feeling sick), and breakthrough bleeding particularly in the first few months of taking the pill
  • the pill may cause some weight gain, mood changes or loss of sex drive in some women
  • the pill doesn't protect you against STI's

Health concerns

  • If you are asking your doctor for a prescription for the pill it is recommended that you let the doctor know your full medical history. Taking the pill does not usually cause any health problems, however, it can be harmful to take the pill if you have certain health conditions.

Examples may be:

  • migraine
  • history of blood clotting
  • liver problems
  • unusual vaginal bleeding that has not been checked out by a health worker

It is also important to know that smoking increases the risk of harmful effects of the pill.

The progestogen only pill or minipill (POP)

The POP is taken daily without a break. When first starting the POP it is advisable to use back-up contraception like condoms for 7 days. The POP should be taken at the same time each day. It is important not to be more than 3 hours late when taking the POP.

The POP is one contraceptive you can use if you are breast feeding and when a baby is being weaned.

Diaphragms

Diaphragms are a form of contraception. These are soft rubber caps worn inside the vagina to cover the cervix, the entrance to the uterus. They prevent the sperm from entering the uterus.

How well do they work?

For a diaphragm to work it needs to:

  • fit properly
  • be put in correctly
  • be used every time you have sex

Research shows that the diaphragm is not as effective as the Pill.

Advantages versus disadvantages

It may be helpful for you to consider both the advantages and disadvantages before deciding whether to use a diaphragm.

Some advantages may be:

  • You put it in before you have sex. It can be inserted up to 24 hours before and it should be left in for 6 hours after sexual intercourse.
  • It can be used only when you have sex and does not affect the body the rest of the time.
  • It can be used when a woman has her period.
  • It can be washed and reused, lasting 1 to 2 years.

Some of the disadvantages may be:

  • They may be harder to use than other forms of contraception. Knowing your body and being comfortable with it may make it easier to use a diaphragm.
  • You may be allergic to rubber.
  • Weight change of 4kgs may mean you need to change your diaphragm to a different size.
  • Diaphragms may not protect you against all STI's.

Where do you get it?

You need to be fitted with the correct size diaphragm and shown how to use it. You can buy them from where you have them fitted, or at a chemist.

You can also get them fitted at:

  • FPA health centres
  • some sexual health centres
  • women's health centres
  • some local doctors.

More information

FP NSW Healthline - 1300 65 88 86.

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