1 in 3 women still using the 'withdrawal' method of contraception

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A higher level of unintentional pregnancies found in those using the unreliable method...

Young couple in bed
A study has found shocking stats that one in three young women in America are still using the 'withdrawal' method as their answer to birth control.

The highly unreliable form of contraception which is dependant on the man pulling out before he ejaculates, is still used by 31 per cent of women aged 15 to 24, found new research carried out at Duke University Medical Centre in North Carolina.

Analysing data from the national survey of U.S. women, the researchers found that of those who used the method, 21 per cent became pregnant unintentionally compared to 13 per cent of those who used other contraceptive methods.

Withdrawal method users were also 7.5 per cent more likely to have sought emergency contraception says the findings, which will be published in Obstetrics & Gynocology journal.

But why are people still relying on this?

There is no one answer. A variety of factors have been cited from the logistics of always having birth control, cost of contraception in America, through to the embarrassment factor of going into a pharmacy, or abstinence-only education courses that are still taught in the U.S.

Lead author Dr. Annie Dude says it's all down to education on the part of the doctors, 'My overall take is that doctors think this is such an antiquated method of birth control that they don't really think to address it with their patients,' Dude explained.

'One of the things we need to do is improve access to long-acting methods like IUDs and implants,' says Dr. Kari Braaten, an obstetrician-gynecologist at Brigham and Women's Hospital who wasn't involved with the study.

'[This can] minimize these experiences and encounters where women find themselves needing to rely on an 'emergency' form of contraception like withdrawal or Plan B when they're otherwise unprepared,' she added.

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