Contraception for men

Is there a birth control pill for men?

Contraception is often seen as a women’s issue. Many of the methods available are for women and adjust the way that female sex hormones work in order to prevent pregnancy. For example the pill, the IUS and the implant. However, it takes two to make a pregnancy happen so men should be included in the conversation about contraception too.  

 

What contraceptives are there for men?

At the moment, there are only two types of contraception available for men: condoms and a vasectomy. In terms of how they work, they are at completely different sides of the spectrum; condoms are only for single use whereas a vasectomy involves making a permanent change to your body and means you will never be able to father children. 

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Is there a contraceptive pill for men?

There are ongoing trials and research into developing an effective contraceptive pill for men. If they become available on the market, this will give men and couples more options when it comes to contraception to find something that works for both partners. You can find out more about this here. 

 

Why should men have to think about contraception?

If you are engaging in a sexual relationship with a woman, you need to both be sure that there is birth control in place, otherwise, you risk getting them pregnant. Methods like pulling out before ejaculating do not work and this is not a reliable way of preventing pregnancy. Having a conversation before getting physical will help to determine whether your sexual partner is already using birth control- you should never assume that this is the case. 

 

Protecting against STIs

Condoms are the only form of contraception that also protect against sexually transmitted infections. This is another important consideration as you can’t always tell whether you or your partner has one. The only way to know for sure is for you both to get tested. It’s recommended that you should continue to use condoms until then, especially if you have multiple partners. 

 

What is a vasectomy?

A vasectomy is basically sterilisation. It involves getting the tubes which carry sperm from the testicles cut or sealed off so that you cannot cause a woman to become pregnant. This is a permanent solution so it’s important to be certain that this is something you want to do before going ahead with it. 

 

Sources

Male Contraceptive Initiative> https://www.malecontraceptive.org/

NHS> What is the Male Pill? https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/contraception/male-pill/

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