Contraception: When should I start?

Do you feel that you are ready to have sex? Or have you already started having sex? If your answer to either of these questions is 'YES' then you should start using contraception.

It is always a good idea to start a contraceptive as soon as you think you are ready for sex. Being sexually active comes with some responsibilities like staying safe and looking after your body. To stay safe and healthy, you should know how to prevent unwanted pregnancies, STIs and HIV.

Contraception can offer you safety during sex. Of course, this depends on the contraceptive that you decide to use. Remember only condoms (used every time you have sex) can protect you from pregnancy, STIs and HIV! However it is always a good idea to use a condom and another form of contraception - 'double up' or dual protection!

Contraception is more effective when you start it immediately after your period. This way you will be able to keep a good record of when you will need to take it next. You can also start your contraception at any time in the middle of your cycle but this can leave you at risk of falling pregnant. Remember that if you are 12 years and older, your local clinic will be able to give you a contraceptive, without your parents' permission, when you need it.

The nurse at the clinic can help you chose the best method of contraception for you. For more information, check out our article about, "Different kinds of contraceptives and family planning: options to prevent pregnancy," here.

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B-Wise User Anonymous 7 March 2019 12:28

Which contraception is best for a person who is 19years old and would want to give birth later on in life... I don't wanna be pregnant now and my aunt says if I go and get and do it I will never give birth ever in my life

B-Wise Expert Expert 9 March 2019 09:20

Dear Anonymous. Long term use of any form of contraceptive does not cause infertility, meaning the inability to fall pregnant in the future. Visit your nearest clinic and talk to doctor or nurse about birth control options. Learn more about the different kinds of contraceptives here: Different kinds of contraceptives and family planning: options to prevent pregnancy