How pregnancy occurs and contraception options
To understand how pregnancy occurs and contraception options available
Let's start with why this is important:
- understanding how you get pregnant means you can make informed choices about when you would like to have children if that is something you would like to do
- using contraception means you are less likely to get pregnant and means you have control over your reproductive health
- If you think you may be pregnant, it is important to confirm it as soon as possible
The most common way for a pregnancy to occur is by unprotected sexual intercourse (penis in vagina) between a woman and a man; however this is not the only way a woman can become pregnant.
There is a small risk for a woman to become pregnant during sexual activities that don’t involve penetration of the penis. If ejaculate fluid (cum or pre-cum) gets into the vagina during any sexual activity, sperm can make their way into the uterus, and a pregnancy may occur.
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What to do if you have had unsafe sex
If you’ve had sex without using a condom, or if the condom breaks or comes off, don’t panic; there are steps you can take to minimise your risks.
STI tests can easily be performed by nurses and at sexual health clinics.
The emergency contraceptive pill is around 85 per cent successful in preventing unplanned pregnancy when used within 24 hours of having sex, but it can still be used for up to 96 hours (four days) afterwards. Most pharmacies offer the emergency contraceptive pill. To get one, ask to speak to a pharmacist and explain your situation, they will advise you on your next steps.
Finding the contraception method best for you
Take this online quiz to help you decide which method is best for you.
Protection from STI's
Most contraception does not protect you from getting an STI.
The best way to reduce your chance of getting an STI is to use a condom every time you have oral, vaginal or anal sex.
Barrier methods of contraception, like condoms, can be found at most supermarkets, pharmacies and and convenience stores.
Other methods of contraception such as short acting and long acting reversible are usually prescribed to you by your doctor. To find a bulk billing doctor near you to talk about your options use this website.
I think I might be pregnant
If you have missed a period, have tender breasts, nausea or a feeling very tired you could be pregnant.The sooner a pregnancy is confirmed, the sooner you can receive care, and the more options you will have available to you The easiest way to find out is to take a home pregnancy test available from supermarkets or pharmacies. If you like you can ask your partner or a close friend to be there while you do it.
If there are problems in your relationship, including family violence, talk to your doctor or midwife, or call the National Sexual Assault, Domestic Family Violence Counselling Service on 1800 737 732 (1800RESPECT). They can help you get support so that you and your baby stay safe.
Finding out you are pregnant can be a rollercoaster of emotions, if you need to talk to someone about what is happening here are a number of services to contact:
QLife is Australia’s first nationally-oriented counselling and referral service for people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans/transgender, intersex and/or queer (LGBTIQ+).
Information on sexual health including STI's, contraception and abortion
Information on reproductive health and options