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If you’re thinking about having sex for the first time, or if you’ve been sexually active for a while, it's vital that you’ve got all the information about contraception that you need. You must use condoms every time you have sex to protect yourself from infections that can spread through unprotected sex. These are called sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

Types of contraception

There are many types of contraception available for both men and women. Some that you may have heard of include:

  • condoms 
  • the pill 
  • long acting methods – implants, injections and IUD’s

Contraception is very effective at preventing pregnancy but needs to be used correctly to work! That’s why it’s very important that you find the method that suits you. But whichever method of contraception you choose, everyone needs to use condoms to protect against STIs (sexually transmitted infections). Contraception and condoms are free from your GP, family planning clinics or young people’s contraceptive services. You can also buy condoms from pharmacies and supermarkets.

Remember that even though it’s against the law for people under the age of 16 to have sex (in Northern Ireland, the age of consent is 17), you’ll still be able to get confidential contraceptive advice from a doctor or nurse if you’re below this age.

For more information on individual contraception methods visit our contraception pages and

Or, download our likeitis booklet

Call 0845 300 8090

We are here 24 hours

Emergency contraception

young people contraception
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