Ten Contraceptive Myths, Debunked

Over at the Mirror, Miriam Stoppard has a list of ten contraceptive myths. The list of what she considers to be the most "misleading and dangerous" is included at the bottom of the article.

Some of the myths are common sense, such as myth ten, "Two condoms are safer than one," or myth four, "The morning-after pill has to be used the next day." Confusion over the latter is sort of understandable, as its name might imply usage. Calling it only emergency contraception may avoid the propagation of this myth.

It’s important to remember that, although obvious to most of us, to someone a little less informed, who might not have the benefit of sex-ed in their school, discussing and debunking these myths is remarkably helpful and important.

Here’s an abridged version, without Stoppard’s commentary:

10 Contraceptive Myths:

1 You can’t get pregnant if the man hasn’t ejaculated
You can only get pregnant mid-cycle
You can’t get pregnant if you’re breastfeeding
The morning-after pill has to be used the next day
Hormonal contraceptives can reduce fertility
You need a break from the Pill or patch
The Pill makes you fat
The implant moves around the body
Only mums can use an IUS or IUD
Two condoms are safer than one

Are there any she missed, that we could add to the list?


Like this story? Your $10 tax-deductible contribution helps support our research, reporting, and analysis.

For more information or to schedule an interview with contact press@rhrealitycheck.org.

  • invalid-0

    Breastfeeding is effective birth control.

  • invalid-0

    I know of two women who got pregnant on that myth. While it may appear to work for some people, for others, it does not. Why chance it??

  • invalid-0

    I wish my OB/GYN would read #9. I’m having trouble with oral hormonal contraceptives, and have been recommended to try an IUD a few times.

    Only to get the “I guess it’s too bad you’ve not had a kid” line afterwards.

    • invalid-0

      I would change doctors….that’s too much judgement placed on you. It’s your choice.

  • progo35

    I am not trying to fearmonger, as I know that birth control devices change, but I would definitely recommend NOT using an IUD if other methods are available. My mom used an IUD and that is why she and my dad were unable to have any biological children after my brother. (The IUD was manufactored by the same company that makes dimatap, and a lot of women had the same problem in the 1970s). Obviously, there are different devices available now, but I’d definitely recommend using almost any other type of birth control.
    "Well behaved women seldom make history."-Laurel Thatcher Ulrich

  • invalid-0

    Yes, the question was what other MYTHS are there. The poster is suggesting that breastfeeding=contraception is a myth.

  • invalid-0

    Today’s IUD is completely different from what your mum used. Look up the facts, there is nothing to fear from today’s IUD.

    Women should feel confident exploring this option. If your doc says you have to have had children first… time to find another doc.

  • http://scarlett-franklymydear.blogspot.com/ invalid-0

    And I know people who have gotten pregnant while on the pill. And people who have gotten pregnant while using condoms. Are those not effective birth control, either?

  • colleen


    Just on the off chance that yours is a genuine question,

     Here’s a chart comparing the effectiveness of various birth control methods. 

    For a woman who does not want to become pregnant and for those of us who would honor their judgement CLEARLY some methods are superior to others. In this case  most of the methods recommended have a typical failure rate of 25% or more.

    The exception is LAM but, one has to have had a child and even then as you can see, it’s good to go for just six months and only if menstruation does not resume in that period of time.