Natural Birth Control Methods

| Modified on Apr 28, 2018

Pregnancy is a beautiful thing, but it can be a bit of an issue if you are unprepared for bringing a new life into the world. Birth control is an effective way to prevent an unplanned pregnancy but some forms of birth control are better than others. While conventional birth control methods have the highest success rates, they can also produce negative effects. Some people look to natural options for birth control without side effects, such as tracking fertility, herbs, and withdrawal.

What Kinds of Birth Control Are Available?

There are a number of different types of birth control available. Some of the most common include contraceptive medication, an intrauterine device, or a vaginal ring. These options, however, may have side effects such as a drop in libido, weight gain, and others. You should consult your doctor to help you select an appropriate form of contraception for you.

What Kinds of Natural Birth Control Can I Use?

In addition to traditional contraceptive methods, there are also a number of natural birth control options. These methods include tracking your fertility, taking herbs, or practicing withdrawal. Some people have also had success using an apple cider vinegar douche following intercourse.

1. Tracking Fertility

Generally speaking, a woman is only fertile 3 days out of the month, so tracking fertile days and abstaining from sex on these days is one form of natural birth control. There are several different tracking systems including the temperature method or noting when the female’s vaginal temperature is elevated following ovulation, the mucus method which involves tracking changes in the amount and texture of vaginal discharge, and the calendar method which is used to track a woman’s cycle strictly by the calendar. For most couples, these tracking systems are most effective when combined.

2. Herbs

Just as herbs can be used to increase fertility, these remedies can also be used to prevent pregnancy. Some of the most common herbs used to dampen fertility include stoneseed root, jack in the pulpit root, and thistles. These options are typically steeped in tea and drank and can prevent fertility for up to one week.

3. Withdrawal

Withdrawal is another method of natural birth control that involves the male withdrawing his penis from the female’s vagina before ejaculation. However, this form does not always work because sperm is often released in small amounts even before ejaculation.

Continue reading below for more tips from our readers and let us know if you have a suggestion!

Apple Cider Vinegar

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Jamila (Columbus, Ohio) on 07/05/2015

I have been using Apple cider vinegar for birth control for two years now, and it's working out perfect.I actually use it with sea sponge. I soake the sea sponge in Apple cider vinegar and insert it for 10 to 15 minutes prior to have sex.

Replied by Mo
(Jacksonville, Fl)

Can you use this after too?

Replied by Cate

How do you use it for birth control? Like you soak may be a cotton wool in apple cider vinegar, for 15min before having sex then insert it down there??

Natural Birth Control

Posted by Diane (Los Angeles, Calif. United States) on 03/10/2012

I was recently talking to my sister in law. She told me that she knew of two women that used an Apple Cider Vinegar and water douche immediately after sexual intercourse and neither woman had anymore unwanted pregnancies! Ever again while using this birth control method! That the Apple Cider Vinegar kills live sperm!

The two women involved had children and didn't want any more children. This was back in the 40's and 50's.

I was wondering if anyone else had heard of this form of effective birth control? If this does indeed work I think more women should be aware of this effective and inexpensive way of preventing pregnancy.

Thanks, Diane

Replied by Maria
(Gippsland, Australia)

Hi Diane, After coming home from sex education at school my mother showed me her douche and told me she had been using it (vinegar & water) whilst breast feeding her last baby - she thought!! Thank goodness thats all she was using as we have an absolutely wonderful extra sibling!

We are only fertile for about 3 days in our cycle so why not learn how to tell when we are and either abstain (the easiest) or use another method. I wonder when I hear of the ACV or lemon method if their sugested success is because 3 days out of approx 30 days means we are only fertile 10% of the time.

Replied by Timh
(Louisville, Ky, Usa)
2063 posts

Diane, I heard reference to ACV as a natural form of birth control in the movie Like Water For Chocolate and also wondered if it was true. Also, and for another question, can a woman who is not pregnant or having recently delivered a baby, nurse (breastfeed) a baby??? In this movie the younger sister (as opposed to her older sister that serviced an entire platoon of soldiers and thus needed ACV) was held captive and in the service of her tyrannical mother. This young lady had the job of nanny for her (other) sister's baby. Feverishly wanting to marry a man and have her own baby, her fever causes her breast to swell and lactate and she becomes very happy to nurse her sissy's baby. Can this, or has this induction ever actually happened? The movie is very much based on psychological and spiritual trauma and healing, which includes magic and miracles. A real masterpiece of a movie, and good for anyone who has suffered any type of abuse.

Replied by Diane
(Los Angeles, Ca. United States)

Maria if the vinegar and water douche is not effective the two married women I discussed in my previous post sure got lucky that neither ever got pregnant ever again?

I wonder if your mother forgot to use the douche one day?

Replied by Maria
(Gippsland, Australia)

No exception, every time after sex but never used at any other time. Some ladies even use it before to enhance the chances of getting a girl, I know of no one who has done this.

Replied by Maria
(Gippsland, Australia)

Diane I am not saying it cannot work but that it doesn't always. But I also wonder if the ladies you mentioned knew their fertile time. If they did and used the Apple Cider Vinegar then it definitely worked for them, if they didn't then we will never know if it was even used in their fertile time.

I remember being told by my Dr that every time you have sex the sperm lives for 2-3 days even though The Billings Method had been taught for some years by then. So she should have known that happens only when your mucous is in the pre-fertile or fertile stage, I would hope she does now!

Replied by Diane
(Los Angeles, Ca. United States)

Maria, The ladies I mentioned were still young, fertile, married and had many children and after using the apple cider vinegar and water douche NEVER AGAIN HAD CHILDREN using this method.

Replied by Elaine
(Edmond, Oklahma, Usa)

My mother told me about "The Whites" years ago when I was first married. She said if you see a slimy, clear or white discharge it means you are ovulating. She told me that it only occured occasionally, but I noticed that every month, about two weeks after the first day of my period, I had a slight, clear, mucous (slimy) discharge. I avoided my husband at this time. I had stopped taking the pill and this was my method of birth control. One month my Whites went on for a couple of days than usual. I thought, surely I'm out of my window and can "indulge". Well, that was over 18 years ago and my daughter will be a senior in high school this year. I have told a couple of friends who were trying to conceive about this. I told them, when you see this, you know what to do and do it as often as you see this discharge. Their dischage was at different times than the normal two weeks after a period. Both now have babies and it didn't take long for them to conceive. Good luck either for control or conception. This method is NOT 100%. Nothing but abstinence if you are in your fertile years is.

Natural Birth Control
Posted by Tina (Sylvania, Ohio, Usa) on 03/25/2011

Do you know any natural ways to prevent pregnancy? I am not in any sexual relationship but would like to know what may prevent such a state in case I ever get married. I do not and will never want to get pregnant. I believe in 'adoption is the best option' do to many factors (one being that there are many parentless kids in need and another being that the earth is already overpopulated as it is). I have a sister who used birth control Pills, condoms, and a 'sponge' and still got pregnant. Thanks.

Replied by Arn
(Kenmore, Wa.)
20 posts

Do a web search for "ovulation method". This is a simple, free 100% effective method. Obviously the powers-that-be don't want you to know about it. Basically, a woman is only fertile 2 days a month. The method teaches you to know when that is. It doesn't involve watching the calendar or taking your temperature. Check it out. It's almost too easy.

Replied by Meggabite
(Girdwood, Alaska)

I agree and disagree with this, as my mother was using this method when she got pregnant with me! But it's really the only option out there if you aren't willing to use artificial hormones. IUDs aren't recommended if you haven't already had children, as they can cause very painful menstrual cramping.

Replied by Sarah
(San Diego, Ca, Usa)

Also, look up fennel seed, neem and green papaya.

Replied by Jolene
(El Paso, Texas)

I'm a big fan of everything natural, I stopped taking birth control last year because of the negative side effects that left me tired and moody all the time. Well, I found this great little gadget and it's an all natural birth control little gadget, it works simply by taking your temperature every morning and letting you know if your clear of pregnancy or should use precautions having intercourse. I highly recommend it, no more crazy hormones.

Replied by Rosie Q.
(Santa Cruz Ca)

Jolene from El Paso I know we are not suppose to use brand names etc but is there any other info you can give me regarding this "gadget"? thanks so much. I recently started reading taking charge of your fertility and it is very helpful , I have just started so don't have much feedback on it. All I can say is that it is different from the rythym method, which I know causes a lot of unplanned pregnancies.

Replied by Natalia
(Palo Alto, Ca)

Hi Rosie,

I suspect Jolie meant the Lady Comp. It also comes in a version called Baby Comp designed for concieving though it can also help you avoid this. its a german device you can buy online anywhere in the world...expensive but lasts forever. I have used it for 1 1/2 years and it worked perfectly up until I got lazy about taking my temp every day....i got pregnant using it only about 75 % of the time (go figure).

I havent used it again though still own it and plan to use it in the future, my schedule right now is not regular enough to use it properly (my bedtime/ awake time varys widly between weekends and weekends, making temperature taking less accurate and therefore less reliable).

I'm currently looking into Saheli/centchroman, an indian non hormonal birth control pill btw 95-98% accurate. you also buy online.