Birth control – best ones for teenagers
ACOG recommendation: IUD or implant
For teens, the guidelines of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) state that sexually active teen girls should be fitted with an IUD or a birth control implant as the best way to prevent teen pregnancy.
Out of 40% of teenagers who are sexually active, nearly all will use some form of birth control. However, less than 5% will use oral contraceptives with the result that 82% of teen pregnancies are unplanned.
IUD vs implant
Older forms of IUDs last for up to 12 years and newer ones up to 5-7 years. They can be removed whenever the teen wants. IUDs are expensive, approximately $500 and $1,000 for the procedure. The procedure must be carried out by a health care professional.
Birth control implants last for only 3 years but costs less than an IUD. The cost of the procedure is around $400 to $800. Like the IUD, it must be placed by a health care professional.
In some states, a teen girl who is a minor has a right to make her own decision regarding birth control and no one else needs to be involved. Even with this right of privacy, getting an IUD or implant may be too expensive for the teen, in which case, a parent or carer may have to be informed with the teen’s consent.
Birth control alternatives: condoms and oral contraceptive pills
Male or female condoms and oral contraceptive pills cost much less – between $1 to $20 a month. Condoms and pills will together work well to prevent teen pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases. Unfortunately, There is a high risk of failure of these methods of birth control to prevent teen pregnancy due to the chances of the teen ‘not getting it right’.
Condoms are easily torn or worn wrongly while taking one dose of oral contraceptive pills two hours late may result in a pregnancy.