IUDS and implants are among the most effective of reversible birth control methods and a new federal report reveals that a growing number of American girls and women turn to these to avoid pregnancy.
In a new report released on Tuesday, Feb. 24, researchers from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has shown that over the last decade, the use of these contraceptive devices has increased almost five times with over 7 percent of women between 15 and 44 years old now relying on IUDs and implants for birth control.
Nonetheless, these hormonal implants and intrauterine devices still have a lot of catching to do to match the popularity of birth control pills, which are being used by 28 percent of women in the U.S. who are in childbearing age. 16 percent of women likewise rely on their partners using condom for contraception.
Doctors have been increasingly recommending the use of IUDS and implants and this effort appears to have worked as the number of women using these so called long-lasting reversible contraceptives (LARCs) has significantly increased from 2006-2010 to 2011-2013.
The increase in the number of women who use IUD during this period jumped by 83 percent while use of implants have increased three-folds during this period. Both methods, hailed for their efficacy, are 99 percent effective at preventing pregnancy.
"Long-acting reversible contraceptives (LARCs), which include intrauterine devices (IUDs) and subdermal hormonal implants, are gaining popularity due to their high efficacy in preventing unintended pregnancies," CDC reported. "Since approval of a 5-year contraceptive implant in 1990 and redesigned IUDs, there has been growing interest in the use of LARCs for unintended pregnancy prevention."
The report likewise noted that use of LARCs is highest among women between 25 and 34 years old with 11.1 percent of women in this age group using this type of contraceptive between 2011 and 2013. In comparison, the percentage of women between 15 and 24 years old who use LARCs is only 5 percent while the rate in women between 35 and 44 years old is 5.3 percent. Women who have given birth at least once were also more likely to use LARCs than women who have not yet given birth.
The use of IUDs has declined in the past because of safety concerns but the popularity of the device has now returned after new versions of this contraceptive were introduced in the early 1990s. One disadvantage of using LARCs though is that they do not prevent the spread of sexually transmitted diseases.