Condoms are absolutely the best birth control for teenagers. They protect against pregnancy and disease. They are used at the time, so there is no need to fret over whether you forgot to take your pill last Tuesday. They are relatively inexpensive, and easily available (regardless of your age). Both genders can take responsibility for procuring and using them. There are, of course, a few drawbacks, but they are relatively small.

Hormonal birth control, which includes the pill and the DepoProvera shot, are the other common methods out there. The first big drawback, as I see it, of these methods, is that they do not protect against STIs. Teenagers need to form the habit of using condoms every time, regardless of their partner’s STI status. This is just a good sexual health supporting habit. However, there is a second big drawback. Hormonal birth control has serious emotional repercussions for some women: depression. It may be that as many as 50% or more women on hormonal birth control experience some level of depression which was brought on by the hormonal birth control. The third drawback here is that it is primarily through hormonal birth control that teenagers learn to think of birth control as something in the women’s realm. Rather, it should be thought of as something that both genders think of as their responsibility.

So what birth control method(s) do you use? What did you use as a teenager? There are, of course, pro’s and con’s of every method. What are the pro’s and con’s that you live with on a daily basis?