Sex and contraception

It is important to be aware of the importance of having safe sex, as sexually transmitted infections are on the rise and the UK currently has the highest rate of teenage pregnancy in Europe.

Nowadays, sex is much less of a taboo subject and teenagers should be encouraged to talk openly with their teachers, friends and parents about contraception.

Using contraception will prevent unwanted pregnancies and using condoms will help to protect against sexually transmitted infections.

There are now a number of different contraceptive methods, ranging from condoms and the contraceptive pill, to the implant and the intrauterine device. It is important to discuss contraception with your partner or any person you decide to have sexual intercourse with.

Contraceptives are available from GP surgeries and your GP will be able to recommend the best type of contraceptive method for you.

Many men who have had already had children and decide they don’t want to have any more children and men that are certain they don’t want to have children choose to have a vasectomy; this is considered a permanent form of contraception.

However, some men regret their decision and decide they want to have more children; this is particularly common amongst men that get divorced and then meet a new partner.

If this is the case, they may choose to have a vasectomy reversal; this operation involves reconnecting the vas deferens tubes that carry the sperm.

The operation does not guarantee success but it is much more likely to be successful if the vasectomy reversal is carried out within ten years of the original vasectomy.

Some Primary Care Trusts do not offer vasectomy reversals and the patient may have to pay for the operation privately; this usually costs around £2000 but prices vary according to the particular clinic.