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Contraception methods

There are many different types of contraception/ārai hapū available in Aotearoa New Zealand.

methods of contraception:

There are different methods of contraception, including:

What is long-acting reversible contraception?

Long-acting reversible contraception (LARC) is a contraceptive that lasts for a long time.

There are two types of LARC in Aotearoa New Zealand:

They are sometimes called “fit and forget” contraception because you don’t need to remember it every day or every month.

LARCs are the most effective types of contraception. They are more than 99% effective at preventing pregnancy.

What are hormonal contraceptives?

These are contraceptives that use hormones to prevent pregnancy.

Hormonal contraceptives include the pill and the Depo Provera injection.

There are two types of pill:

You take one pill each day. The pill is more than 99% effective at preventing pregnancy if you take it correctly. 

The Depo Provera injection is another type of hormonal contraception. You get an injection every three months. If you get your injections on time, Depo Provera is more than 99% effective.

What are barrier methods?

Barrier methods stop sperm from entering the vagina. The two barrier methods are:

Condoms protect against sexually transmissible infections (STIs) as well as unintended pregnancy.

You can buy female condoms from our website, on other online shops and from some pharmacies.

You can get a prescription for male condoms from Family Planning or your doctor, or you can buy them from our website, other online shops, pharmacies, supermarkets and other shops. 

What is emergency contraception?

There are two options for emergency contraception: the emergency contraceptive pill (ECP) or a copper IUD.

The ECP is approved to be taken up three days after unprotected sex. For women of an average weight, the ECP is 98% effective. 

For women who weigh more than 70kg, the ECP is less effective and a copper IUD is recommended. Women who weigh more than 70kg and choose to take ECP, should ask if taking a double dose is the right option for them. The copper IUD can be inserted up to five days after unprotected sex, and is more than 99% effective at preventing pregnancy.

Emergency contraception can be used to prevent pregnancy if:

  • you haven't used protection
  • your normal contraception fails e.g. condom splits
  • you have missed more than one contraceptive pill
  • you have been vomiting or had diarrhoea while on the pill
  • you have missed your injection
  • you have been forced to have sex without contraception.

You should not use the ECP as your regular method of contraception.

WHAT IS FERTILITY AWARENESS?

Fertility awareness is learning the signs of fertility in your menstrual cycle to help you plan or avoid a pregnancy. 

What is permanent contraception?

Permanent contraception, sometimes called sterilisation, prevents all future pregnancies. It is very difficult or impossible to reverse. For males it is vasectomy and for females it is tubal ligation

Family Planning has clinics located throughout New Zealand. Use the clinic finder to find your nearest clinic.

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