TUESDAY, Oct. 20, 2020 (HealthDay News) — In 2017 to 2019, 65.3 percent of women aged 15 to 49 years in the United States used contraception, with female sterilization the most common method, according to an October data brief published by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Center for Health Statistics.

Kimberly Daniels, Ph.D., and Joyce C. Abma, Ph.D., from the National Center for Health Statistics in Hyattsville, Maryland, used data from the 2017 to 2019 National Survey of Family Growth to provide information on current contraceptive status among women aged 15 to 49 years.

The researchers found that 65.3 percent of women aged 15 to 49 years in the United States were currently using contraception in 2017 to 2019. Female sterilization, oral contraceptive pills, long-acting reversible contraceptives (LARCs), and male condoms were the most common contraceptive methods (18.1, 14.0, 10.4, and 8.4 percent, respectively). Compared with women aged 15 to 19 years and 40 to 49 years, LARC use was higher among those aged 20 to 29 and 30 to 39 years (13.7 and 12.7 percent, respectively, versus 5.8 and 6.6 percent, respectively). Compared with non-Hispanic White women, Hispanic and non-Hispanic Black women had higher current condom use (10.5 and 11.0 percent, respectively, versus 7.0 percent). Female sterilization declined and use of the pill increased with higher education.

“Understanding variation in contraceptive use across social and demographic characteristics offers potential insight into larger fertility patterns, including birth rates and incidence of unintended pregnancies,” the authors write.

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