Contraception – all the options

By: Osler Health International
Posted on: 26 Oct 2023

Perhaps you and your partner may not be ready for children. Or perhaps other factors are holding you back from planning for a family. Regardless of the circumstances, contraception is pivotal in preventing unintended pregnancies. Besides the use of female and male condoms, there are many other contraceptive methods in Singapore.

Many of our patients ask: Which contraception is best for me? Is the contraceptive method easy to use? How effective is the birth control method? And are there any side effects to consider? To make an informed choice, it’s important to first understand how each option works.


For couples certain about not having children, the following permanent contraceptive methods offer a definitive solution.

Tubal ligation

Tubal ligation is a female sterilisation method where the fallopian tubes are closed to prevent the sperm from meeting an egg. You can return home the same day after the procedure and resume normal activities shortly after. The effectiveness in preventing pregnancy is also immediate.


Vasectomy ensures sperm does not reach the penis. Patients in Singapore can return home on the day of the operation and usually recover within a week. However, you have to undergo tests over a few weeks post-operation. During this period, an alternative birth control method should be employed.

If you and your partner simply wish to delay starting a family, you can opt for the following reversible contraceptive methods.

Intrauterine contraception

Intrauterine devices (IUDs) are long-term contraceptive methods. When you receive an IUD insertion, the doctor will install either a hormonal IUD to prevent sperm from accessing the uterus or a copper-based IUD that actively destroys sperm attempting to reach the uterus.

Hormonal contraception


Implanon involves implanting a slender, flexible rod discreetly under the skin of a woman’s upper arm, where it’ll continuously release progesterone into the bloodstream. An implant lasts up to three years and is remarkably effective, with less than one in 1,000 women experiencing a pregnancy post-implant, as reported by the NHS. Like other medications, it may present side effects, the most frequent being irregular bleeding.

Contraceptive injection

The contraceptive injection introduces a synthetic variant of the hormone progestogen directly into a woman’s upper arm or buttocks. Once administered, this hormone is gradually dispersed into the bloodstream over 12 weeks, offering a convenient quarterly approach to birth control not affected by medication. Depending on your constitution, it’s possible to experience side effects such as weight gain that last as long as the injection. 

Contraceptive pills in Singapore

Contraceptive pills rank among the most widely adopted birth control methods. A combined pill blends oestrogen and progestin, whereas a mini pill incorporates only progestin. The pill’s efficacy hinges on consistent, timely consumption. Contraceptive pills are consumed by women and are unsuitable for individuals intolerant to oestrogen-based contraceptives. As a GP clinic which manages women’s health and women’s sexual health clinic, the Osler Health doctors can prescribe the best contraceptive pills for you  

Birth control patch

A birth control patch is applied to a woman’s lower abdomen, upper body, or buttocks, where it gradually releases progestin and oestrogen hormones directly into the bloodstream. With this method, you’ll apply a fresh patch weekly for three weeks. Like contraceptive pills, getting your patch requires a prescription from medical clinics in Singapore. The doctors at Osler Health can assist you.

Vaginal ring

The vaginal ring is a flexible plastic ring introduced into the vagina, which gradually releases oestrogen and progestogen in milder doses than pills. The ring remains in for three weeks, followed by a week’s break before you insert a new one. This contraceptive method has minimal side effects, and the ring is easy to insert and remove. However, it is unsuitable for oestrogen-intolerant women, and timely replacement is crucial.

Barrier contraceptive methods


A diaphragm is a flexible silicon dome placed in the vagina to block sperm from reaching the uterus. It acts as a physical barrier, much like a condom, but must remain for at least six hours post-intercourse. When maintained well, it is reusable and can last up to two years, but its application may require some skills and time-tracking. While it works fairly well, other contraceptive methods in Singapore, like pills, implants, or IUD insertions, are more effective.


The contraceptive sponge, crafted from polyurethane foam and infused with spermicide, is positioned deep in the vagina, acting as a barrier to the uterus. It has comparatively lower efficacy than other measures.


Spermicide, a chemical solution designed to inactivate sperm, complements barrier contraceptive methods like condoms but should not be paired with a contraceptive sponge. To ensure optimal results, you can seek advice from a medical professional to ensure the correct usage of this method.

Find the contraception that works for you

Ultimately, the effectiveness of contraception depends on various factors, including individual health, family medical history, and lifestyle considerations. Trusted medical clinics such Osler Health can support you and guide you to the best solution for your needs. Please know that all consultations are entirely confidential.

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