3 Artificial contraception

Summary of Section 3

  1. Many people wish to limit the number of their offspring, and so resort to contraceptive measures.
  2. Chemical contraceptives interrupt the production of gametes, or prevent implantation.
  3. Mechanical or barrier contraceptives prevent egg and sperm from meeting and, in the case of IUDs, prevent implantation.
  4. Surgical methods of contraception involve physical alteration of the reproductive tract so as to prevent eggs and sperm from meeting.
  5. Abortion is a traditional and widely used form of birth control, but it sparks ethical and legal debate.
  6. Natural methods of contraception are the only means ethically acceptable to some people, but they restrict intercourse during much of the menstrual cycle, and are less reliable than other methods.
  7. A reductionist understanding of the reproductive process has allowed the development of better contraceptives.