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As a teen, what's the best way to prevent pregnancy?

The best way to prevent pregnancy at any age is abstinence, which is not having sexual intercourse. However, if you choose to be sexually active, there are methods to prevent pregnancy, such as correctly using birth control methods including condoms, birth control pills, IUDs, patches, NuvaRing or hormone shots. All of these birth control methods have a small risk of pregnancy even if used correctly. Abstinence has no risk of pregnancy. Talk to your physician about what method is best for you.
Patricia Geraghty, NP
Women's Health
Simply put, sex is designed to cause pregnancy. This means not having sex, or having the penis ejaculate or “cum” anywhere near the vagina, is the best way to prevent pregnancy.
No method of pregnancy prevention is absolutely perfect. If you are having sex then in general, the less you have to do about birth control everyday or even every time you have sex, the better the birth control works at preventing pregnancy. For women who still want to be able to have a pregnancy later when the time is right, the most effective birth control is an intrauterine device or IUD. About 1 in 1000 couples using the IUD have an unplanned pregnancy. Also very effective are the pills, patch and vaginal ring that contain hormones. Less than 1 to 3 couples in 100 have unplanned pregnancies when using these methods correctly. You must see your health care provider to obtain all of these methods.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.