Contraception Prevents Abortion

U.S. women in their early 20s are less likely to get pregnant and less likely to have an abortion, and it’s thanks to increased access to contraception.

A report from the National Center for Health Statistics showed the pregnancy rate for 20-to-24 year olds dropping 18 percent from 1990 to 2008, from 198.5 per 1,000 women to 163 per 1,000. Women in their late 20s showed a more modest 6 percent drop in pregnancy rates.

The abortion rate also dropped for women in their early 20s, from 56.7 per 1,000 to 38.4 per 1,000, a 32 percent drop. The rate also dropped for women in their late 20s by 16 percent.

The study showed that the lower pregnancy rates were due to significant improvement in the use of contraception. The study showed that 70 percent of women who became sexually active in the early 1990s used a contraceptive or condom during their first intercourse. That number jumped to 84 percent for women becoming sexually active the mid-2000s.

More than half of pregnancies in the U.S. are unplanned, and increased use of contraceptives has been shown to lower the rate of abortion worldwide. A Guttmacher Institute study has shown that abortion drops at a proportional rate to the increase in use of contraception.

Contraceptive Use Widespread

Contraception has been used by virtually every American during their sexual history. According to the study, 99.1 percent of sexually active respondents have used some form of contraception at least once. 82.3 percent of women have used the pill — oral hormonal birth control — and 25.5 percent have used some form of injectable hormonal birth control. 10 percent of women have used a hormonal contraceptive patch.

The study did also show that men were willing to use contraception options when they were available. 93 percent of women reported that they and a partner had used condoms as a contraception at some point in their sexual history, up from 82 percent in 1995. 13.4 percent of women also reported that they had at least one partner who had undergone a vasectomy, up slightly from 2002.

The study gives a boost to the Obama Administration’s plan to require insurance companies to cover contraceptive care. Contraceptive use has clearly led to lower rates of unplanned pregnancies and, consequentially, lower rates of abortion. Oral contraceptives are also something the vast majority of women will use at some point in their lives. Obama’s policy would almost certainly reduce the abortion rate even further — which is something the strongest opponents of the policy claim to want.

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Image Source: Thom L. Curnutt


Kathy Perez
Kathy Johnson3 years ago

duh.. the Pill is a lifesaver. More women should use it.

John Z.
John Z.4 years ago

Lis G, thank you for your post.

Therein, you state "John Z. is hiding" among your other comments.

Nonsense. I have a life, family and job. Responsibilities!

Occasionally, a free moment is found to visit Care2.

In response to your other comment(s), I have received numerous stars, for which I am grateful. I am grateful also for any and all prayers offered, for us.

Keep praying. Thank you!

Beth K.
.4 years ago

maria, this is not a subject open to opinion. It's simply science.

Julie Cook
Past Member 4 years ago

Maria, we obviously disagree on when a new human life is formed. As stated earlier, there are a number of differing views. Some state that a new human life is formed at conception. Some hold the view that personhood begins when the heart begins to beat, or when the central nervous system is mature, or at the first appearance of brain waves, or when the fetus is capable of feeling pain, or when the fetus is capable of cognition, or at birth. Since there have been countless arguments about this, I don’t think we’re going to ever agree since we basically disagree due to religious beliefs, or lack thereof.

Here is just one view:

"Whether or not abortion should be legal turns on the answer to the question of whether and at what point [an embryo or] a fetus is a person. This is a question that cannot be answered logically or empirically. The concept of personhood is neither logical nor empirical: It is essentially a religious, or quasi-religious idea, based on one's fundamental (and therefore unverifiable) assumptions about the nature of the world." Paul Campos, professor of law at the University of Colorado. (2002)

Maria O.
Maria O.4 years ago

Would you please explain and give evidence how a blastocyst is not a human life. The medical evidence is self-explanatory.

How is a blastocyst different from a newborn infant?
Level of Development
Environment - in womb vs outside of womb
Degree of Dependency

Indeed, Plan B is to be taken within 72 hours. Take a look again at the 3rd and 4th ways that I mentioned earlier. You might also want to research what is called 'breakthrough' or 'escape' ovulation and the rate it occurs among the various artificial contraception methods.


Julie Cook
Past Member 4 years ago

Maria, you're right about the process, but what you seem to overlook is that the Plan B pill is to be taken within 72 hours of intercourse. That's within 3 days. By your timeline, it takes 6 days for the blastocyst to attach to the uterus, AFTER having spent at least two days as a zygote travelling down the fallopian tube. That's over a week. To call this blastocyst a human life is very open to debate, and you know where I stand on this issue. So, I think it's best that we agree to disagree.

Maria O.
Maria O.4 years ago

"Maria, calling a two-celled being a baby is a bit of a stretch, don't you think? In any case what happens is a very very early miscarriage at best."

Let me give you some fetal development info about a zygote and a blastocyst from the U.S. National Library of Medicine:

When a single sperm enters the mother's egg cell, the resulting cell is called a zygote. The zygote contains all of the genetic information (DNA) needed to become a baby. Half of the genetic information comes from the mother’s egg and half from the father’s sperm (46 chromosomes total, 23 from the mother, 23 from the father). The zygote spends the next few days traveling down the Fallopian tube and divides to form a ball of cells.
The zygote continues to divide, creating an inner group of cells with an outer shell. This stage is called a blastocyst. The inner group of cells will become the embryo, while the outer group of cells will become the membranes that nourish and protect it.

The blastocyst reaches the womb (uterus) around day 5, and implants into the uterine wall on about day 6. At this point in the mother's menstrual cycle, the lining of the uterus has grown and is ready to support a baby. The blastocyst sticks tightly to the lining, where it receives nourishment via the mother's bloodstream.

Cell division has occurred, this is a human life, distinct from that of the father or the mother.

Julie Cook
Past Member 4 years ago

Thanks, Beth. I fear that you're right.

Beth K.
.4 years ago

Julie, Maria has been well programmed, good luck on changing her mind with facts.

Julie Cook
Past Member 4 years ago

Maria, calling a two-celled being a baby is a bit of a stretch, don't you think? In any case what happens is a very very early miscarriage at best.