First, the good news: According to new data published by the Centers for Disease Control’s National Center for Health Statistics, 99.4 percent of teenage women use some form of contraception during sex, up two percent from 2002. Earlier this year, the organization reported that the teen birth rate in the United States hit a historic low, with only 24 births per 1,000 women. In addition, today’s teens are having less sex altogether versus previous generations; about 40 percent have reported having sex “at least” once. Back in the 1980s, these figures were between 50 and 60 percent.
Now, the bad news: While stats are improving, the U.S. pregnancy rate is still higher than most other developed countries. The reason could be attributed to the fact that, besides condoms, the pullout method is reported to be the second most popular form of contraception practiced by today’s young people. Sixty percent of teenage boys think they have the stamina and experience to retract just before they climax. Yeah…right. What’s worse, young women trust these guys.
Thankfully, condoms had been used by 97 percent of the CDC’s survery sample; oral contraceptive pills followed closely behind in third place, at 56 percent.
According to the Guttmacher Institute, even with “perfect use,” four percent of couples who pull out will become pregnant within a year. Note that this figure reflects perfect use, which is obviously rare. More realistic estimates reveal that “typical use” will result in a 20 percent pregnancy rate within the year.
Similarly, stats published by Planned Parenthood determined that 27 of 100 women who use the pullout method get pregnant every year. Besides the fact that the pullout method completely neglects the spread of sexually transmitted infections, millennials are being labeled “The Pullout Generation.“ Research conducted by Duke University reported that nearly one in three women between 15 and 24 has used the pullout method as her primary form of birth control.
Not to mention, live sperm can be found in pre-ejaculate, and no man, no matter how skilled, knows when he’s leaking seminal fluid. A study published in 2011 found that live swimmers in a third of men’s pre-cum samples, meaning even if you do successfully pull out, fertilization is still possibile.
As Planned Parenthood points out, withdrawl isn’t as effective as other types of birth control—but it is better than nothing. Most important, they note that pulling out is a method that can be easily combined with other methods to give extra "pregnancy preventing power.” Its recommendation? Using withdrawal and condoms together. However, if you use withdrawal with birth control, keep the morning-after pill around in case semen gets “in or near” the vagina. Yes, sex can be a lot of work, guys, but taking a shortcut is never worth it.