Tomorrow, September 26, is World Contraception Day. The mission is to spread the word about the multitude of contraceptive methods so young people can make informed decisions about their sexual and reproductive health.
Studies show most young adults find out about sex and contraception through their friends, family, and health care providers. Ask your doctor any questions you might have, and don’t be afraid to discuss them with friends and family. Be there for one another by staying educated and safe.
There are many different types of contraceptives out there today and knowing the pros and cons of each can be daunting. But Your-Life has made it easy to get started! Their “Which Contraception is Right for Me?” quiz will give you a good place to start. Their website is chock-full of information on the different methods you can use, why one might be better for you than another, and the importance of protection and communication.
Contraceptives, mainly condoms, are well known by young adults in the US. In fact, three-quarters of teens report using condoms the first time they have sex! And condoms have consistently been the leading contraceptive method at first intercourse. (A reminder: condoms are an added level of protection, not a guarantee. Abstinence is the only way to 100% prevent pregnancy and STDs transmitted through intercourse.)
Condoms are the only contraceptive method that, when used properly, can protect you from contracting an STD or HIV, specifically STDs that transmit through bodily fluids. Keep in mind, some STDs can be contracted through other means such as open sores and needle sharing. Caring Communities offers free condoms at all our locations, as well as in multiple places of business and education as part of our Condom Distribution Program. You can always stop by our offices and fill up your pockets or call to find out where else near you has free condoms available! We want you to be safe!
If you’re able to: talk to your partner, talk to your health care provider, and talk to your parents, even if it feels hard or awkward. The more open you are with one another, the safer everyone will be. Health care providers want to know this information, so they can give you the best care possible. If you’re not open about your behaviors, your health may be at risk. Doctors cannot read minds, so help them help you.
Being on the same page as your partner(s) is incredibly important for all involved. Finding where you feel comfortable and knowing how to stay safe is vital to protecting your health and will only make your relationship stronger. And every time you have unprotected sex, you should get an STD check! We offer them for free! There is no harm in checking. Knowing your status empowers you to make the most informed decision for yourself and others.
Talking to parents, health care providers, and partners can feel intimidating. If you need more tips on how to talk about your sexual health, visit Your-Life.com.
Remember: Contraceptives don’t just protect you from an unplanned pregnancy, they also reduce your risk of contracting an STD or HIV. This means all genders should be thinking about contraception! There is no shame in taking care of your health!