Birth Control

Choices offers many different types of birth control and its team of experienced and knowledgeable health care providers created the ESPC Model to help you to select the type that is right for you.

EEffectiveness: Some methods are less than 50% effective; others are over 99% effective. How important is it for you to avoid pregnancy?

S-Safety: There are benefits and risks to every type of birth control and every patient reacts differently. By taking your health history into consideration, a Choices health care professional will recommend the safest type of birth control for you.

P-Personality: The Choices counseling staff and dedicated health care providers will take the time to get to know you in order to help select the method of birth control that best suits you needs, likes, dislikes and lifestyle.

C-Cost: Birth control ranges in price from $0-$1,000 depending on which method you choose. Most insurances will cover the cost of your birth control. If you qualify, you can get free birth control by enrolling on-site at Choices for the New York State Family Planning Benefit Program or Family Planning Extension Program

Make an appointment online, walk in for a same day appointment or call a Choices representative to have a confidential conversation about your birth control needs. Remember at Choices our specialty is YOU!

How well does it work? 91-99% Effective

How to use? Insert a small ring into the vagina. Change ring each month.

Pros: One size fits all. Private. Does not require spermicide. Can make periods more regular and less painful. No pill to take daily. You can become pregnant right after stopping the ring

Cons: Can increase vaginal discharge. May cause spotting the first 1-2 months of use. Does not protect against HIV and other STI’s.

How well does it work? 91-99% Effective

How to use? Must take pill daily

Pros: Can be used while breast feeding. You can become pregnant right after stopping the pills.

Cons: Often causes spotting, which may last for many months. Does not protect against HIV or other STI’s.

How well does it work? 91-99% Effective

How to use? Apply a new patch once a week for three weeks. No patch in week 4.

Pros: Can make periods more regular and less painful. No pill to take daily. You can become pregnant right after stopping the patch.

Cons: Can increase vaginal discharge. May cause spotting the first 1-2 months of use. Does not protect against HIV and other STI’s.

How well does it work? 79-95% Effective

How to use? Use a new condom each time you have sex

Pros: Can buy at many store. Can be used for anal and vaginal sex. Good for people with latex allergy. Protects against HIV and other STI’s. Can be used while breast feeding.

Cons: Can decrease sensation. May be noisy. May be hard to insert. May slip out of place during sex.

How well does it work? 91-99% Effective

How to use? Must take pill daily

Pros: Can make periods more regular and less painful. Can improve PMS symptoms. Can improve acne. Helps prevent cancer of the ovaries. You can become pregnant right after stopping the pills.

Cons: May cause nausea, weight gain, headaches, change in sex drive. May cause spotting, which may last for many months. Does not protect against HIV or other STI’s.

How well does it work? 82-99% Effective

How to use? Use a new condom each time you have sex

Pros: Can buy at many store. Can help prevent early ejaculation. Good for people with latex allergy. Protects against HIV and other STI’s. Can be used while breast feeding.

Cons: Can decrease sensation. Can cause loss of erection. Can break or slip off.

How well does it work? >99% Effective

How to use? Must be place in uterus by a health care provider.

Pros: Mirena and Kyleena can be left in place for up to 5 years. Liletta may be left in place up to 3 years. No pill to take daily. May improve period cramps and bleeding. Can be used while breastfeeding. You can become pregnant right after it is removed.

Cons: May cause lighter periods, spotting, or no period at all. Does not protect against HIV or other STI’s.

How well does it work? >99% Effective

How to use? Must be place in uterus by a health care provider.

Pros: May be left in place up to 10 years. No pill to take daily. Can be used while breastfeeding. You can become pregnant right after it is removed.

Cons: May cause more cramps and heavier periods. May cause spotting between periods. Does not protect against HIV or other STI’s.

How well does it work? 88-94% Effective

How to use? Must be used each time you have sex. Must be used with spermicide. A health care provider will fit you and show you how to use it.

Pros: Can last several years. Cost very little to use. May protect against some infections, but not HIV. Can be used while breastfeeding.

Cons: Using spermicide may raise the risk of getting HIV. Should not be used with vaginal bleeding or infection. Raises risk of bladder infection.

How well does it work? 78-96% Effective

How to use? Pull penis out of vagina before ejaculation (that is, before coming).

Pros: Costs nothing. Can be used while breastfeeding.

Cons: Less pleasure for some. Does not work if penis is not pulled out in time. Does not protect against HIV or other STI’s. Must interrupt sex.

How well does it work? 94-99% Effective

How to use? Get shot every 3 months

Pros: Each shot works for 12 weeks. Private. Usually decreases periods. Helps prevent cancer of the uterus. No pill to take daily. Can be used while breastfeeding.

Cons: May cause spotting, no period, weight gain, depression, hair or skin changes, change in sex drive. May cause delay in getting pregnant after you stop the shots. Side effects may last up to 6 months after you stop the shots. Does not protect against HIV or other STI’s.

How well does it work? 72-82% Effective

How to use? Insert more spermicide

Pros: Can buy at many stores. Can be put in as part of foreplay. Comes in many forms: cream, gel, sponge, foam, inserts, film. Can be used while breastfeeding.

Cons: May raise the risk of getting HIV. May irritate vagine, penis. Cream, gel, and foam can be messy.

How well does it work? >99% Effective

How to use? A health care provider places it under the skin of the upper arm. It must be removed by a health care provider.

Pros: Long lasting (up to 3 years). No pill to take daily. Often decreases cramps. Can be used while breastfeeding. You can become pregnant right after it is removed.

Cons: Can cause irregular bleeding. After 1 year, you may have no period at all. Does not protect against HIV or other STI’s.

How well does it work? 58-94% Effective

How to use? Works better the sooner you take it after unprotected sex. you can take EC up to 5 days after unprotected sex.

Pros: Can be used while breastfeeding. Available at pharmacies and Choices. Women of any age can get some brands without a prescription.

Cons: May cause stomach upset or nausea. Your next period may come early or late. May cause spotting. Does not protect against HIV or other STI’s.  May cost a lot.

How well does it work? 76-99% Effective

How to use? Predict fertile days: by taking temperature daily, checking vaginal mucus for changes, and/or keeping a record of your periods.

Pros: Costs nothing. Can be used while breastfeeding. Can help with avoiding or trying to become pregnant.

Cons: Must use another method during fertile days. Does not work well if your periods are irregular. Many things to remember with this method. Does not protect against HIV or other STIs.

Other Methods of Birth Control

Other Sexual Activity

No vaginal sex. No pregnancies. It is as simple as that. There are still plenty of options that will please both you and your partner without the worry of an unwanted or unplanned pregnancy.   But don’t forget about sexually transmitted infection (STIs) that can be spread without engaging in vaginal sex.