Fertility Planning and Contraceptive Methods

It’s your sexual and reproductive right to make decisions about fertility planning and to make an informed choice about the contraceptive method that you or that you and your partner will use. Contraceptive methods available in South Africa include:

Hormonal methods includes:

  • Pills that should be taken daily
  • Injections to be given every two or three months
  • Patches to be placed on the skin on a weekly basis
  • Mirena is a device that is insertedinto the uterus and effective for five years
  • Implanon a 1-rod implant that is inserted sub-dermally into the upper arm and is effective for 3 years.

NB: The Mirena is available at certain public health facilities and the Implanon is not available as yet at public health facilities;

Non-hormonal methods includes:

  • Intra-uterine device(IUD) with copper coiled around the body of the device is inserted into the uterus and is effective for 10 years
  • Condoms specifically designed for females(to be inserted into the vagina and cover the vulva and another the male condom should be placed over an erect penis. Effective for one sexual encounter only. Either the male use one or the female use one during sexual intercourse.

Natural methods includes:

  • The calendar method is used to work out the woman’s fertile period. If the woman or couple do not want a pregnancy they work out the fertile period and do not have sex during that time.
  • The coitus interrupters or withdrawal method is when the male with draws his penis from the vagina before he ejaculates.

NB: Contact the fertility planning clinic / Nurse / Medical Doctor / Gynaecologist to discuss the various methods in order for you or together with your partner to choose the appropriate contraceptive method. Information and the cost of these methods are free of charge in the public health sector.   

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