SARC - Short Acting Contraceptive options

Short-acting contraception

CONTRACEPTION METHODS

Short acting contraceptives are a category of contraception methods that are user dependent and need to be taken on a daily, weekly or monthly basis. They are very effective form of contraception against unplanned pregnancies when used correctly.

Methods of this contraceptive category require you to think about using or taking them regularly or each time you have sex.
They are reversible, meaning that once you stop using them the contraceptive effect wears off quickly and women can become pregnant as rapidly as those ones who have used no contraceptive at all.

Short-acting contraception includes hormonal methods such as the pill, the patch, the ring, and non-hormonal methods such as condoms, spermicides and the diaphragm. The pill, the patch and the ring are included in the state contraception programme for 17-30-year-olds.

MY FREE OPTIONS #SHORT-ACTING

THE COMBINED ORAL CONTRACEPTIVE PILL (COCP)

COCPs are tablets that may have to be taken every day, releasing the hormone progestogen and oestrogen to prevent pregnancy. They are often referred to as the pill and you will need a prescription from your healthcare professional for these.

THE PROGESTOGEN-ONLY PILL (POP)

POPs are tablets which have to be taken every day at the same time with no break between packs. These pills only contain a progestogen hormone and so they can be taken by women for whom oestrogen-containing options are not suitable. They are also known as the mini-pill and you will need a prescription from your healthcare professional for these.

THE PATCH

A small, thin, skin-coloured plastic square that sticks to the skin and releases hormones. It is given with a prescription and can be self-administered once a week.

THE RING

A small, flexible ring that is self-administered with a prescription and placed in the vagina, where it releases hormones for 3 weeks.

OTHER OPTIONS #SHORT-ACTING

The following short-acting options are available to you but not covered under the state contraception programme.

FEMALE CONDOM

An internal condom placed in the vagina that stops sperm from reaching the vagina whilst also helping protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs). It is self-administered and bought over the counter.

MALE CONDOM

A sheath placed over the erect penis to stop sperm from reaching the vagina whilst also helping protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs). It is self-administered and bought over the counter.

SPERMICIDES

Spermicides are creams, films, foams, gels and suppositories that contain chemicals to stop or kill sperm. These are bought over the counter and are self-administered.

THE DIAPHRAGM

A silicone cup placed in the vagina that prevents sperm from reaching the womb. Your doctor or nurse will normally conduct an initial fitting to make sure you have the correct size.

Natural planning

Self-directed methods of avoiding pregnancy that include menstrual cycle tracking and body temperature measurements to identify fertile days.

withdrawal

Also known as ‘The pull-out method’, this self-directed method involves withdrawing the penis prior to ejaculation to avoid pregnancy.

Listen to our podcast with Jess Redden

to learn more about your short acting contraception options.

Women in Ireland aged 17-31 are eligible for free contraception

Who can access free contraception?

  • A female or person with a uterus
  • Aged between 17-31
  • Living in Republic of Ireland 

What information do you need to provide to access the scheme?

  • Name and address 

  • PPS number

  • Date of birth

I want to learn more about the long acting contraception

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NEED ADVICE? SPEAK TO YOUR HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONAL

Speak to a healthcare professional for advice and support on your contraceptive needs.