Contraceptive methods women have ever used: United states, 1982-2010

Kimberly Daniels, William D. Mosher, Jo Jones

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Objective-This report presents national estimates of the proportion of sexually experienced women aged 15-44 who have ever used various methods of contraception in the United States. Trends are shown since 1982, and results are shown by Hispanic origin and race, education, and religious affiliation. The number of methods ever used is also shown, along with reasons for stopping use of selected methods. Methods-Data for 2006-2010 were collected through in-person interviews with 22,682 women and men aged 15-44 in the household population of the United States. Interviews were conducted by female interviewers in the homes of sampled persons. This report is based primarily on the sample of 12,279 women interviewed in 2006-2010 from the National Survey of Family Growth (NSFG). Data from earlier NSFGs are presented to show trends in method choice since 1982. Results-Virtually all women of reproductive age in 2006-2010 who had ever had sexual intercourse have used at least one contraceptive method at some point in their lifetime (99%, or 53 million women aged 15-44), including 88% who have used a highly effective, reversible method such as birth control pills, an injectable method, a contraceptive patch, or an intrauterine device. In 2006-2010, the most common methods that women or their partners had ever used were: the male condom (93%), the pill (82%), withdrawal (60%), and the injectable, Depo-Provera (23%). Method use varied by race and Hispanic origin, nativity among Hispanics, education, and religious affiliation, with significant proportions of women in all categories having used one or more of the most effective methods. The median number of methods ever used by women was about three, but nearly 30% have used five or more methods. Side effects were the most common reason for discontinuing use of the pill, Depo-Provera, and the patch among women who had ever discontinued using these methods due to dissatisfaction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSexual Statistics
Subtitle of host publicationSelect Reports from the National Center for Health Statistics
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Number of pages28
ISBN (Print)9781628085709
StatePublished - Dec 1 2013


  • Condom
  • Contraceptive use and discontinuation
  • National survey of family growth
  • Pill

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)

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