Benefits of modern contraceptives
Contraception can be used to plan when people have children and how many children they have.
This includes choosing:
- when they want to begin having children
- how far apart they want their children to be
- when they want to stop having children
This is everybody’s right under the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights.
Young people are especially at risk of problems in pregnancy. Contraception allows them to put off having children until their bodies are fully able to support a pregnancy.
Contraceptive use reduces the need for abortion by preventing unwanted pregnancies. It therefore reduces cases of unsafe abortion, one of the leading causes of maternal death worldwide.
Early pregnancy can also cause health problems for the baby. Babies born to teenagers are likely to be underweight before and at birth and are at higher risk of neonatal mortality (death of a newborn within 28 days of birth).
Pregnancies that are too close together or poorly timed contribute to high infant mortality rates – that is, the rate of babies that die within their first year of life.
Contraceptive use lets people plan their pregnancies so they can make sure the baby is getting the best care before and after birth.
Contraceptive use slows population growth. This is important because overpopulation puts pressure on the environment, the economy and services such as education and health.