Contraception, or birth control, involves the deliberate prevention of pregnancy. Common contraceptive methods include, but are not limited to, male and female condoms, oral pills, intrauterine devices, contraceptive patches, and contraceptive implants. The use and availability of contraceptives differs greatly by country and region for economic, religious, and cultural reasons. As of 2019, around 842 million women of reproductive age were using modern contraceptive methods. However, around 190 million women had an umet need for contraceptives, meaning they wanted to avoid pregnancy but did not use contraceptives. The most common form of contraception worldwide is female sterilization, followed by male condoms and intrauterine devices (IUD).
Contraceptive use in the United States
In the United States, contraceptives are widely available and use is commonplace. From 2017 to 2019, around 65 percent of women in the U.S. were currently using some form of contraception. The type of contraceptive most often used among U.S. women varies depending on the age group. The most common form of contraception used among women aged 40 to 49 years is female sterilization, while the Pill is the most commonly used form among those aged 15 to 29 years. Contraceptive use among sexually active teenagers is essential to avoid unwanted teen pregnancy and prevent the spread of sexually transitted diseases. However, in 2019, only 54 percent of high school students reported they had used a condom during their last sexual intercourse.
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