Birth control in the United States

History of birth control in the United States See also: Birth control Margaret Sanger, a prominent birth control activist, leaving a courthouse in New York in 1917

Birth control is a method or device used to prevent pregnancy. Birth control has been around since ancient times, but effective and safe forms of birth control have only become available in the 20th century. There is a complicated and long history regarding birth control in the United States, in addition to several of the most prominent policies and laws regarding their use.



See also: Timeline of reproductive rights legislation and History of women in the United States

Birth control before 20th century

See also: Womb veil

The practice of birth control was common throughout the U.S. prior to 1914, when the movement to legalize contraception began. Longstanding techniques included the rhythm method, withdrawal, diaphragms, contraceptive sponges, condoms, prolonged breastfeeding, and spermicides. Use of contraceptives increased throughout the nineteenth century, contributing to a 50 percent d... more

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