When women and their partners have access to a wide range of contraceptive methods, they are better able to plan and space their births. This leads to positive health, social and economic outcomes for women, families and society. The Guttmacher Institute documents the need for, access to and use of contraceptives and provides the evidence base for public investment in high-quality and affordable family planning services that provide a full range of methods, comprehensive and accurate information, and effective counseling.
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We’re just beginning to discover the extent to which women use hormonal contraceptives for purposes other than pregnancy prevention. One example is oral contraceptive pills—about 14% of pill users take them solely for noncontraceptive purposes, including menstrual pain relief.