What are Permanent Forms of Birth Control?

Permanent forms of birth control, often considered a definitive solution in family planning, offer individuals an option to prevent pregnancy. With advancements in medical technology, several methods are available, each with its own set of considerations and implications. Understanding these permanent birth control options is crucial for individuals seeking a long-term contraceptive solution aligned with their reproductive choices and lifestyle.

What are Permanent Forms of Birth Control?

Permanent birth control is a choice that many people (and/or couples) make when family planning and there are many reasons why someone might make this decision. Some reasons why people might choose this option include:

  • Health or genetics: Some hormonal conditions (like polycystic ovarian syndrome) can benefit from permanent birth control. Used as a means to regulate the hormonal system, when the body becomes unable to do it alone.
  • Personal reasons: Some individuals and couples just choose not to have children with their partner(s) in the future.
  • Less effective common forms of contraceptives: 6 out of 100 women will get pregnant every year because of contraceptive failures.

Should I Speak to my Partner First?

If you are in any long-term partnership, it is a good idea to discuss with your partner the decision you'd like to make about a permanent type of birth control method. More importantly, discuss what impact it could have on your relationship.

While the choice remains a personal one, many people discuss their future and options with their life or sexual partner first.

Counseling and advice are usually available from medical staff when procedures are being planned or scheduled. This ensures that you're making the right choice at the best time.

How Common is Permanent Birth Control?

These methods are becoming more common each day. Today, surgeries have become a lot easier and less complicated. Both are easier for doctors and more affordable for their patients.

Restrictions around birth control and choice have also been relaxed internationally. This has contributed to its increase in popularity as a choice.

Is it Dangerous?

For the majority of people, it is safe. However, some conditions could impact how easy the surgery is on an individual's body. This includes various connective tissue disorders and other hereditary conditions.

If you aren't sure whether these birth control methods are safe for you, speak to your doctor about any possible concerns and conditions first.

Are There Restrictions?

As long as you are:

  • Legally considered an adult
  • Have no health conditions prohibiting the surgery (or making it too risky)

You should be able to choose permanent birth control as a possible option.

As part of the potential procedure, a doctor will guide you in the process. They should be able to tell you whether you're a good candidate for your chosen procedure or not.

Permanent Birth Control Options for Men and Women

Vasectomy (for Men)

A vasectomy is an easy and quick surgical procedure, which is used as a permanent form of birth control for men. Under local anesthesia, a small incision is made and the vas deferens are severed. Usually tied around and closed or cauterized.

Vasectomies can be done in just a few minutes and are considered irreversible and permanent. The semen must be tested and free of sperm. Another form of contraception should be used until cleared by your health care provider.

Learn more: Vasectomy FAQs

Tubal Ligation (for Women)

Tubal ligation is an effective permanent birth control procedure for women. This type of sterilization prevents the travel of the egg through the fallopian tubes – therefore, preventing pregnancy. Having your tubes tied can be costly but is also a quick and effective option.

Learn more: Which is More Effective: Tubal Ligation or Vasectomy?

Hysterectomy (for Women)

A hysterectomy is another form of permanent birth control. The inner reproductive system is removed entirely. The surgery is done under general anesthesia and is considered more invasive than tubal litigation.

Sometimes this is necessary and preferred – with some benefits, such as a reduction in potential cancer risk.


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From screening and prevention to treatment and recovery, our health professionals will be there for you. Our team of dedicated physicians has been serving residents of Nebraska, Iowa, and South Dakota for more than 25 years.

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