Which Contraceptive is Best for You? VIDA

Different Birth Control Types

Birth control is not one-size-fits-all. Choosing the best contraceptive method is something that should be defined by your body, your current contraceptive needs, and your health. One thing is for certain, there is no “best contraceptive method.” There is a perfect contraceptive method for you.

While you should always decide what that “best method” is with the help of a board-certified gynecologist, it’s very helpful to know some of your options before your doctor’s appointment. With so many choices available, it’s easy to feel confused. Let’s help you answer some of these questions:

  • Which contraceptive method is the most effective?
  • How do I choose a contraceptive method?
  • What happens if one form of birth control doesn’t work for me?

What is the Best Contraceptive?

As we previously explained, there simply isn’t one best contraceptive method, but with some information, it’s possible to determine which ones could work for you.

Some of the things you should consider in order to decide are:

  • What forms of birth control have you tried and for how long?
  • Are you trying to prevent pregnancy for a long time (1 year or longer)?
  • How attentive and mindful are you for taking daily medications?
  • Are you at risk of STIs?

What Contraceptive is Most Effective?

You can divide contraceptive methods into hormonal and non-hormonal, and all of them will have some pros and cons. Read below to learn about the safest form of birth control for you.

  • Condoms.

Hormonal: No.

Frequency: Every time you have sex.

Efficiency: 85% to 98%, depending on how precise are you when using it.

The main things to consider: Condoms are affordable and convenient since they are available in every pharmacy and grocery store. Condoms are the only contraceptive method that offers protection against sexually transmitted diseases, which is why most doctors recommend that you use a condom even if you have a different form of birth control.

  • Contraceptive Pills

Hormonal: Yes.

Frequency: Daily. With some pills, your precision taking them needs to be down to the hour of the day.  

Efficiency: 91% to 98%, depending on how precise are you when taking them.

The main things to consider: There are two main kinds of contraceptive pills: the combination pill, which contains estrogen and progestin, and the minipill, which contains only progestin. Birth control pills work by stopping the sperm from joining with an egg. They do so by preventing ovulation. The hormones in the pill also thicken the mucus on your cervix, making it harder for the sperm to get to an egg.  

Combination pills are ‘simpler’ to use, although you still need to take them daily. The minipill needs more precision when taking it but can be a good option for those who’ve experienced side effects from estrogen in the combined pill. Neither of them provides any protection against STIs.  

  • The Contraceptive Patch.

Hormonal: Yes.

Frequency: Weekly for 3 weeks with a 1 week rest period.

Efficiency: 91% to 99%, depending on how precise are you when using it.

The main things to consider: The transdermal patch releases estrogen and progestin, making it a similar yet more convenient contraceptive method than the pill. You can stick it on your arms, back, buttocks, or tummy. The patch might be good for you if you felt comfortable with the pill but had trouble remembering to take it every day. It might not be the best if you think you might forget the “3 weeks on, 1 week off” timing.

  • The Birth Control Shot

Hormonal: Yes.

Frequency: Every 3 months, administered by a doctor or a nurse.

Efficiency: 94% to 99%, depending on how precise are you when getting each new shot.

The main things to consider: The birth control shot uses progestin to prevent ovulation and making the cervical mucus thicker. You must remember to visit your doctor’s office every 3 months in order to get full protection. Some women find it super convenient since they don’t have to remember anything daily or weekly. For others, it might be complicated to commit to a doctor’s appointment so frequently.

  • The IUD

Hormonal: Yes, if you get Mirena, Liletta, Skyla or Kylena. No, if you get the copper or silver IUD, such as Paragard.

Frequency: Depending on the type of IUD you get, from 3 up to 12 years.

Efficiency: More than 99% effective.

The main things to consider: If you wondered which contraceptive is most effective, the IUD is our top choice. IUDs are extremely reliable when preventing pregnancy and offer both hormonal and non-hormonal protection. They are easy to insert, remove and check.

Copper or Silver IUD: These types of IUD can last up to 12 years. Once your doctor inserts it, you are instantly protected against pregnancy. IUDs work as a barrier inside your body since your doctor places it at the top of your uterus. The metal in them thickens the mucus and creates a hostile environment for sperm, preventing fertilization. They are ideal if you are looking for an ultra-effective contraceptive method but wish to avoid hormonal methods. After insertion, your doctor will show you how to check your IUD yourself, and apart from a follow-up consultation to make sure the IUD is doing its job, you can basically forget about it for a decade! Your gynecologist will check its there during your yearly exams, but you won’t have to worry about it.

Hormonal IUD:  Depending on the type of hormonal IUD you get, you might be protected for 3,5, or 7 years. Apart from preventing pregnancy by acting as a barrier, similar to the copper and silver IUDs, the hormones in them prevent ovulation. They release only a small amount of hormones into your body, minimizing side effects from other types of hormonal contraceptives. An added benefit of hormonal IUDs is that they tend to make periods lighter and help with cramps. Once your doctor inserts it, you can practically forget about it.


Let’s get you on the right path towards choosing the best contraceptive method for you. Call VIDA Wellness and Beauty at (619) 738-2144 to schedule a one-on-one consultation with Dr. Saldaña, our board-certified gynecologist and find the best contraceptive method for you.

Dr. Alejandro Quiroz

Dr. Quiroz is our board-certified Chief Plastic Surgeon at VIDA Clinic in Tijuana. He specializes in Facial Rejuvenation, Neck lift, Buttock Augmentation, Breast Augmentation, Body Contouring and more. He is member of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, American Society of Plastic Surgeons, International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, San Diego Plastic Surgery Society, the Mexican Society of Aesthetic & Reconstructive Plastic Surgery and the Mexican Council of Aesthetic & Reconstructive Plastic Surgery, to mention a few.