There are several ways to reduce the risk of an unwanted pregnancy without using a condom. You can ask your doctor for all kinds of medical options (and get a prescription) or you can opt for a natural way. However, keep in mind that a condom has other benefits besides birth control – namely the prevention of STDs (sexually transmitted diseases). The only 100% guaranteed way to prevent pregnancy is not to have sex; all other options significantly reduce the risk of pregnancy, but it is never guaranteed that they will prevent pregnancy.
1- Use of medical options to prevent pregnancy without a condom
1-Take hormonal contraceptive pills. If you as a woman want to prevent pregnancy without using a condom, the most commonly used option is to take hormonal birth control pills. These are available from your doctor; the pills are composed of a combination of estrogen and progesterone, or only progesterone. Normally you take one for 21 days a day, followed by seven days “fake pills” (in which your body has a withdrawal bleed instead of menstruation).
- There are various contraceptive pills with different compositions. Ask your doctor about the different options to determine which is best for you. -The advantage of birth control pills is that they are 91% effective in preventing pregnancy (and even more effective when taken at exactly the same time each day without missing a dose).
- If you as a man have sex with a woman and do not want to make her pregnant, you can ask her if she regularly takes the pill. The disadvantage of this method of contraception for men, however, is that they depend on and have to rely on the word of a woman that she takes them daily and does not miss a dose.
2-Take a coil (IUD). A coil or IUD is a small device in the form of a T that is inserted into the vagina in the womb (where it remains for a number of years and serves as a contraceptive). They are more than 99% effective in preventing pregnancy.
- Available IUDs include: Mirena spiral, Kyleena and the copper IUD.
- The Mirena spiral is based on hormones. It is more expensive and lasts for five years, but the advantage is that it reduces menstrual cramps and bleeding. The Kyleena IUD is also a hormone spiral and also lasts for five years.
- The copper IUD contains no hormones. The advantages are that it is cheaper and can last up to 10 years, but the disadvantages are that your menstrual cramps and monthly bleeding can be exacerbated.
- You can get a prescription for an IUD from your doctor. Your doctor can make an appointment with you to bring him in, which normally only takes a few minutes.
- Inserting an IUD can be as painful when it has to pass through the narrow opening of your cervix, but after it has been inserted you should not feel any more pain.
3-Try other hormonalcontraceptives. Other hormonal options are a vaginal ring, the Depo-Provera injection pill and the contraceptive patch. These are available on prescription from your doctor.
- A vaginal ring (the NuvaRing) is something that you insert into your vagina and leave it there for three weeks (and then take one week out for a withdrawal bleed).
- It suppresses ovulation by rejecting hormones (a mix of estrogen and progesterone) when it is in the vagina. It is rare for a ring to cause problems during sexual intercourse and normally the user or partner does not feel it. The chance of failure is 9% with normal use and 0.3% with perfect use. The ring can stay out for up to three hours, so if you prefer having sex without it, that’s an option.
- The Depo-Provera injection is administered by your doctor every three months, so the advantage is that as long as you go every three months, you do not have to remember to take the birth control pill regularly (or use another method). [5 ] The chance of failure is less than 1% for those who get their injections every three months.
- Contraceptive patches are approximately 5 cm x 5 cm in size and are applied to your skin. Each patch lasts for a week and then needs to be replaced – you must use three in succession, followed by a patch-free week for a withdrawal bleed. The patches contain the same hormones as the contraceptive pill and when used correctly (and carefully replaced every week), the chance of failure is less than 1%.
- Ask for the Implanon contraceptive implant. This contraceptive rod is inserted into your arm and lasts up to four years.
4-Choose a spermicide. Spermicide is a gel or foam that is introduced into the vagina, trapping and killing sperm by chemicals that are toxic to sperm. They are available at your local drugstore or pharmacy. The chance of spermicide gels failing is around 22%.
5-Use a barrier method such as a cervix cap or aperture. The cervical cap and diaphragm are means that a woman brings over the cervix in her vagina. This prevents sperm from entering the womb. The cervical cap or diaphragm also normally contains chemicals that kill sperm, further reducing the chance of pregnancy. The risk of failure is approximately 14% in women who have never been pregnant and 29% in women who have been pregnant before.
- You can get a cervix cap or diaphragm from your doctor.
6-Choose sterilization. One of the surest options to prevent pregnancy is by sterilizing either the man or the woman (or both). However, it is important that you know that this is a permanent procedure. It should not be done unless you are absolutely certain that you do not want biological children of your own in the future.
- Man’s seed leader is cut in this procedure. This ensures that a man can no longer cause pregnancy.
- The procedure is called tubalation for a woman. The fallopian tubes of the woman (who guide unfertilized eggs from the ovaries to the womb) are cut. This ensures that eggs cannot be fertilized and thus prevents pregnancy.
2-The use of natural methods to reduce your risk of pregnancy
1-One way to reduce the chance of pregnancy without using a condom is to leave the church before singing. This method means that the man takes out his penis just before ejaculation, so that sperm does not have the chance to penetrate the woman’s vagina and can lead to pregnancy.
- The challenge with this method is that part of the sperm (pre-cum) can ejaculate early (before the real ejaculation and therefore before the man has withdrawn his penis), which makes this method only 78% effective in preventing pregnancy.
2-Use the “calendar method”. Most women have a cycle of 28 days, starting on the first day of her period. Ovulation generally occurs on the 14th day, but a woman may be fertile for a few days before and after ovulation.
- If a woman has sex well in advance or after her most fertile days, her chances of a pregnancy are much smaller. -The disadvantage of the calendar method is that not all women have cycles of exactly 28 days.
- There is quite a bit of variation between women and there are even women who do not have a consistent menstrual cycle every month.
- That is why this method is only 76% effective in preventing pregnancy without a condom. -If your cycle is consistently around 28 days, subtract 14 days from the END of your cycle and consider this the start of your most fertile few days. The second half of a woman’s menstrual cycle (after ovulation) is usually more consistent than the first half of the cycle (before ovulation).
3-Track your fertility by recording physiological characteristics. One way to monitor your fertility is by recording physiological characteristics, such as basal body temperature and / or cervical mucus secretion, to determine the specific days on which a woman will have extra is fertile.
- With the “body temperature” method, a woman must be the first to do what she does every day in the morning to measure her temperature before she has eaten. This rises approximately 0.2 to 0.5 degrees after ovulation. It is therefore recommended to use a condom, a spermicide or other non-hormonal form of birth control from the first day after the woman’s menstrual period to three days after her body temperature has risen.
- With the “cervical mucus method” the woman observes the characteristics of the secretion of her cervical mucus. There is normally no discharge immediately after menstruation, followed by mildly sticky discharge in the days after, strong mucous discharge that is a bit wetter and brighter in the days around ovulation, and no visible discharge at the end of its ‘fertile period’ until the start of the next menstrual cycle. Therefore, during the days when the cervical mucus is abundant, clear and wet, it is important to avoid sexual intercourse since the woman is most fertile.
4 – Understand that natural methods still carry a risk of pregnancy. Both the “sing the church out” method and the calendar method are significantly less effective than the medical contraceptive methods. It is important not to rely on these techniques if you really want to prevent a pregnancy. Here’s why:
- If as a man you have inadvertently made a woman pregnant, she usually has 100% choice whether or not to continue with the pregnancy (or to have an abortion).
- This can mean that by making a woman pregnant, if she chooses to keep the baby, you are now financially responsible to help, and perhaps also take responsibility for parenthood.
- Both men and women are affected by unintended pregnancies. Having the responsibility for a baby before you are ready can influence (and potentially stop) other plans regarding career, relationships, or other parts of your life.
- If you have become pregnant unintentionally as a woman, you will be faced with the violent decision whether to keep the baby or not, or to abort it – provided that it is legal where you live.
3-Understanding the added value of a condom
1- Consider a condom to reduce the risk of STDs. Before making the decision not to use condoms, it is important to consider the role of condoms in preventing STDs and pregnancies. Even if you use other contraceptives, such as a hormonal form of contraception, they do nothing to protect you against STDs (sexually transmitted diseases). That is why condoms have an important advantage when it comes to having safe sex.
- Condoms protect you against STDs because the contact between the genitals is reduced and the sperm is kept out of the vagina. In both ways an infection is transmitted from one person to another.
2-You must use protection if you do not trust your partner. If you have a long-term monogamous relationship, you know if your partner is using alternative contraceptives, such as the pill or an IUD, since you have built a relationship of trust with that person and you have probably discussed the best contraceptive strategies for both of you. However, if you have a new sexual partner that you do not know well enough to fully trust, it is important to understand that a condom is one of the most reliable methods of birth control.
- If you are a man, you never know for sure whether a new female sexual partner is actually “on the pill” (or is using another contraceptive) and is responsible enough. -It is possible for a woman to lie about taking contraceptives if she deliberately tries to conceive. – A man can lie to a woman in the same way that he has had a vasectomy. Or, he can say that he leaves the church for singing and does not do it.
- The use of a condom is a clear and direct method of contraception where trust is not important for both parties.
3-Find emergency contraception if the condom ruptures or doesn’t work. Condoms are 82% effective in preventing pregnancy.  However, if the condom ruptures during sex, it is important to seek emergency contraception immediately.
- You can purchase emergency contraception at your local pharmacy or drugstore, or often even at the supermarket.
- Your options are a morning after pill (Norlevo) or a copper IUD. Norlevo should be taken as soon as possible after unprotected sexual intercourse (ideally within a day, since it is less effective the longer you wait). However, Norlevo can be used up to 72 hours after having unprotected sex. A copper IUD is effective as an emergency contraceptive for up to 5 days after unprotected sexual intercourse.
- Other options include Ulipristal acetate and pills with a combination of estrogen and progesterone. You need a prescription from your doctor for these emergency contraceptives.
4-Use a condom as backup protection if a pregnancy is unthinkable. Since every method has a chance of failure, it is smart to use more than one method – for example, both a condom and a contraceptive pill – in situations where you absolutely don’t want to get pregnant. It is better to be careful than to risk a pregnancy and to deal with the potential aftermath.