Birth Control and Sex Advice for Teens

Are You Prepared?

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For many high school students across the nation, it is finally time for Prom! A time to get a pretty dress, buy corsages, rent limos, and try to convince mom and dad to stay out all night long. This is also a time that many teens may be considering having sex for the first time. Thinking about having sex may be stressful and scary for many teens because it may mean having to think about how to prevent an unintended pregnancy. You may already know about birth control, or you may not have a clue about your contraceptive options. Some teens have been fortunate enough to have been exposed to comprehensive sex education, yet many have not.

Although talking about birth control may be embarrassing, if you can't talk to your partner about this, then maybe you aren't ready to have sex.

Did you know that 1 in 5 girls become pregnant in the US before the age of 20? Teen pregnancy is always an issue facing American youth, so you must act responsibly if you are planning to have sex—on prom night—or whenever. I realize that there is so much available information about teen sex that it may be hard to know where to begin and which sources to trust.

There are also some great birth control apps and condom apps you can use. They can remind you when to take your pill or show you where the closest place to buy condoms may be. It is also important to realize that birth control is not as effective if you don't use it the correct way. This means, you should know how to properly use a condom, for example, if this the birth control method you have chosen.

You may have already decided that you don't want to have sex—on prom night or not at all. Abstinence is the only way to 100% guarantee that you won't become pregnant. Yet, if this is your choice, it is important that you have discussed this with your prom date, so he/she is aware of where you stand and doesn't have any expectations for having sex after the prom. Many teens talk about how prom night may tempt them into breaking their abstinence vows.

And if you do end up having unprotected sex after your prom, remember that you can use emergency contraception after-the-fact. Teens can now buy Plan B One-Step (the morning-after pill) or its generic alternatives (which are just as effective) May Way, Take Action, or Next Choice One Dose over-the-counter without a prescription. There are no age restrictions to buy the morning-after pill.

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