Home Men's Health The “Pill” for Men – What are the Male Birth Control Options?

The “Pill” for Men – What are the Male Birth Control Options?

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When we talk about birth control, the mind automatically goes toward female birth control. From birth control pills to patches and implant devices to injections, there are several female birth control methods, and honestly, we are all glad about it. 

However, from a broader perspective, it does pose the question: are there any male birth control options

Because when it comes to contraception, it can be a shared responsibility. We will talk about male birth control options in detail in this article.

What is Male Birth Control?

Male birth control refers to methods or devices used by men to prevent or reduce the likelihood of pregnancy in their partners during sexual intercourse. 

Now, why do we consider male birth control options? For starters, the contraceptive pills women take are not always reliable. Or perhaps the adverse effects of the pill prevent them from taking the medication. Or they might not use any birth control at all? After all, women on hormonal birth control face many risks, including headaches, blood clots, depression, and high blood pressure

Since 1960, women have borne the majority of the responsibility for family planning. Every year, unplanned pregnancies happen almost half of the time. So, that’s where male birth control comes into the equation. 

Although the idea of male contraceptive pills has been around for decades, research is still limited in this area. 

Family Planning for Men: How Does Birth Control for Men Work?

There are several methods of male birth control, each of which works differently to prevent pregnancy. Here are some of the most common methods:


Condoms are contraceptive items used during sexual intercourse to prevent pregnancy and reduce the risk of sexually transmitted infections (STIs). 

Condoms are typically made of latex or polyurethane. When used correctly and consistently, condoms work by creating a physical barrier that prevents sperm from coming into contact with the egg, thus preventing fertilization and pregnancy. 

Condoms also provide a barrier that can reduce the risk of transmission of STIs by preventing contact between bodily fluids.

When used typically, condoms are 87% effective; when used diligently, they are 98% effective. 

While wearing a condom properly, it is important to always adhere to the manufacturer’s instructions, properly apply it, store it, and use it each time you engage in intercourse. 

While condoms cannot completely prevent STIs, they are only effective when used consistently and correctly. 

So, it’s always a good idea to use condoms with new partners until you both undergo a sexual health screening, even if that’s not your preferred form of birth control.

Read more about sexually transmitted infections in detail

Vasectomy: Male Sterilization

Sterilization, sometimes known as a vasectomy, is the non-hormonal male birth control option. 

The tubes that deliver the sperms are cut or sealed off during a vasectomy, which is a straightforward surgical procedure. As a result, pregnancy cannot happen since the ejaculate contains no sperm.

During sterilization, a local anesthetic is used, and it normally takes less than 15 minutes. The guy is awake and aware of what is happening throughout, without experiencing any pain.

There are two types of vasectomy: vasectomy with incision and vasectomy without incision.

  • Incision Vasectomy: To reach the tubes that expel sperm from the testicles, the doctor must make two tiny incisions in the skin on either side of the scrotum. He cuts the tubes, takes out a tiny portion, and seals the ends, by tying them together or using heat to seal them.
  • With a no-cut vasectomy, the doctor will only puncture the skin of the scrotum to access the tubes, negating the need to cut the skin. The tubes are then sealed in the same manner, either with ties or heat-sealing.

A vasectomy is a permanent male birth control option 99% effective at preventing pregnancy. 

Urology experts at Doctors Hospital say it is possible to reverse a vasectomy in many cases. However, itt doesn’t always work, and the chances of successfully reversing a vasectomy reduce over time. Therefore, it’s important to ensure that you don’t want children (or any more children) before going ahead with sterilization.

Male Contraceptive Pills

The contraceptive pill, maybe the most popular method of birth control, is not yet an option for males. 

Although there has been continuous research into a male birth control pill, it is not yet available and is probably several years away.

Many new male contraceptive pills are currently undergoing studies, including two for medications namely DMAU and 11-MNTDC, respectively. Both of these belong to a group of medications termed progestogenic androgens, which suppress the testosterone hormone, hence reducing the number of sperm.

Male Contraceptive Gel

There have been other attempts at male birth control over the years besides male contraceptive pills. 

NES/T is one of the male contraceptive gels now undergoing testing. This hormone-based work by applying it on the skin.

The gel contains a mixture of testosterone (T) and nestorone (NES), intended to lower sperm production. Early tests revealed that the gel effectively reduced sperm while the study participants’ testosterone levels remained normal. It lessens adverse side effects including increased weight gain and decreased libido.

The Withdrawal Method

The withdrawal procedure, sometimes known as pulling out, has been practiced for many years. But the most traditional methods of birth control aren’t necessarily the best!

Simply put, the withdrawal technique involves extracting the male genitalia from the vagina before ejaculation.

The pull-out procedure is 96% successful at preventing pregnancy when applied correctly. 

Nevertheless, this procedure is not always successful, and since the first surge of ejaculation contains the most sperm, it makes it even riskier! 

Furthermore, since pre-ejaculate still contains semen, you can properly follow the procedure and still become pregnant. The withdrawal approach is only 80% effective with regular use.

Read more about how to know whether sperm is in or not

A Last Word from Healthwire!

There are several benefits to new male contraceptive techniques being developed, from encouraging men to participate in family planning to relieving women of the burden of birth control.

But in the interim, it’s critical to be upfront and honest about what works best for you, whether you prefer conventional female contraception techniques, natural birth control, or male birth control options. 

Birth control, in our opinion, is a shared obligation. If you want to know more about it, reach out to well-renowned Male Sexual Health Specialists anywhere near you in Pakistan via Healthwire’s platform to have a more detailed discussion. 

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