Birth Control Briefing
Birth Control Menu continued...
- Relatively cheap
- Easy to get
- Can reduce the chance of pregnancy and STIs
- Difficult and awkward to use
- More expensive than male condoms
- It makes noise!
Sounds like pesticides, right? Same idea—spermicides kill sperm. Most contain the chemical nonoxynol-9. You apply them to your vagina in various ways: foams, gels, films, or suppositories/inserts. Spermicides must be used in conjunction with condoms—just using spermicide alone won’t protect you from STIs and provides only some protection against pregnancy.
- When used with condoms, very effective at contraception and reducing STIs
- Easily available
- No prescription needed
- Nonoxynol-9 can irritate the vagina.
- There’s no guarantee that all sperm will be blocked or killed with nonoxynol-9 and condoms—and it only takes ONE little sperm to get you pregnant.
- Some studies suggest nonoxynol-9 can increase the chances of getting HIV due to irritation of the vagina.