Answer the following question.Describe the various methods of birth control to avoid pregnancy. - Biology

Long Answer

Answer the following question.

Describe the various methods of birth control to avoid pregnancy.

Write in detail any four temporary methods of birth control.



Contraceptive methods are of two main types i.e. temporary and permanent.

1. Temporary methods:

  1. Natural method/ Safe period / Rhythm method:
    In the natural method, the principle of avoiding chances of fertilization is used. A week before and a week after menstrual bleeding is considered a safe period for sexual intercourse.
    This method is based on the fact that ovulation occurs on the 14th day of the menstrual cycle. Drawback: High rate of failure.
  2. Coitus Interruptus or withdrawal:
    In this method, the male partner withdraws his penis from the vagina just before ejaculation, so as to avoid insemination.
    Drawback: Pre-ejaculation fluid may contain sperms and this can cause fertilization.
  3. Lactational amenorrhea (absence of menstruation):
    This method is based on the fact that ovulation does not occur during the period of intense lactation following parturition. Therefore, as long as the mother breastfeeds the child fully, chances of conception are almost negligible.
    Drawbacks: High chances of failure.
  4. Chemical means (spermicides):
    In this method, chemicals like foam, tablets, jellies, and creams are used by the female partner. Before sexual intercourse, if these chemicals are introduced into the vagina, they adhere to the mucous membrane, immobilize and kill the sperms.
    Drawback: It may cause allergic reaction. This method also has chances of failure.
  5. Mechanical means / Barrier methods:
    In this method, the ovum and sperm are prevented from physically meeting with the help of barriers. These mechanical barriers are of three types.
    1. Condom:
      It is a thin rubber sheath that is used to cover the penis of the male during copulation. It prevents the entry of ejaculated semen into the female reproductive tract. It can thus prevent conception. It is a simple and effective method and has no side effects. Condoms should be properly discarded after every use. A condom is also a safeguard against STDs and AIDS.
      e.g.“Nirodh” is the most widely used contraceptive by males. It is easily available and is given free by the government.
    2. Diaphragm, cervical caps and vaults:
      These devices used by the female are made up of rubber. They prevent conception by blocking the entry of sperms through the cervix. The device is inserted into the female reproductive tract to cover the cervix during copulation.
    3. Intra-uterine devices (IUDs):
      These clinical devices are plastic or metal objects. A doctor or trained nurse places the IUDs into the uterus. These devices include the Lippes loop, copper releasing IUDs (Cu-T, Cu7, multiload 375), and hormone-releasing IUDs (LNG-20, progestasert).
      • Lippes loop:
        It is a plastic double “s” loop. It attracts the macrophages stimulating them to accumulate in the uterine cavity. Macrophages increase phagocytosis of sperms within the uterus and act as a contraceptive.
      • Copper-releasing IUDs:
        Suppress sperm motility and the fertilizing capacity of sperms.
      • Hormone-releasing IUDs:
        Make the uterus unsuitable for implantation and cervix hostile to the sperms. It delays pregnancy for a longer period.
        Drawbacks: Spontaneous expulsion, occasional haemorrhage and chances of infection are the drawbacks of IUDs.
  6. Physiological (Oral) Devices:
    Physiological devices are used in the form of tablets/ pills. It is an oral contraceptive, used by the female which contains progesterone and estrogen. These hormones inhibit ovulation; hence no eggs are released from the ovary of the female using this pill and thus conception cannot occur.
    They also alter the quality of cervical mucus to prevent the entry of sperms. The pill “Saheli” is an oral contraceptive for females which is non-steroidal. Saheli is to be taken once in a week. These pills are sponsored by the Government. Saheli is now a part of the National Family Programme as an oral contraceptive pill in India.
    Drawback: Oral contraceptive pills have side effects such as nausea, weight gain, tenderness of breast, and slight blood loss between menstrual periods.
  7. Other contraceptives:
    The birth control implant is a contraceptive used by the female. e.g. implanon, explanon, etc. It is a tiny, thin rod about the size of a matchstick. It is implanted under the skin of the upper arm and contains progesterone and estrogen. Their mode of action is similar to that of pills. They prevent pregnancy for 3-4 years.

2. Permanent Methods:

The permanent birth control method in men is called vasectomy and in women it is called tubectomy. These are surgical methods, also called sterilization. In vasectomy a small part of the vas deferens is tied and cut. In tubectomy, a small part of the fallopian tube is tied and cut. This blocks gamete transport and prevent pregnancy.

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Chapter 2: Reproduction in Lower and Higher Animals - Exercises [Page 48]


Balbharati Biology 12th Standard HSC for Maharashtra State Board
Chapter 2 Reproduction in Lower and Higher Animals
Exercises | Q 5.06 | Page 48
SCERT Maharashtra Question Bank 12th Standard HSC Biology Maharashtra State Board
Chapter 2 Reproduction in Lower and Higher Animals
Long Answer | Q 5


A mother of a one-year-old child wanted to space her second child. Her doctor suggested 'copper- T' Explain its contraceptive action. 

Short answer question.

Comment on any two mechanical contraceptive methods.

Short answer question.

Write a note on tubectomy.

______ is not a permanent method of birth control.

What is MTP?

What is the method of male known as?

Which of the following is a hormone releasing IUD?

Amniocentesis can be used to determine ______.

How is contraception achieved by a contraceptive pill?

How is contraception achieved with intra uterine devices such as copper T and loop?

What is the term used for the gonorrhoea infection caused to girls before puberty?

Which of the following are chemical barriers used as contraceptives?

Emergency contraceptives are effective if used within ______.

Condoms are one of the most popular contraceptives becuase of the following reasons.

The correct surgical procedure as a contraceptive method is ______.

Diaphragms are contraceptive devices used by the females.

Choose the correct option from the statements given below:

  1. They are introduced into the uterus
  2. They are placed to cover the cervical region
  3. They act as physical barriers for sperm entry
  4. They act as spermicidal agents

Match List - I with List - II.

List I List II
(a) Vaults (i) Entry of sperm through
Cervix is blocked
(b) IUDs (ii) Removal of Vas deferens
(c) Vasectomy (iii) Phagocytosis of sperms
within the Uterus
(d) Tubectomy (iv) Removal of the fallopian tube

Choose the correct answer from the options given below.

Which one of the following is an example of Hormone releasing IUD?

Mention two advantages of lactational amenorrhea as a contraceptive method.

Copper ions-releasing IUDs are more efficient than non-medicated methods. Why?

Comment on the essential features required for an ideal contraceptive.

Discuss the mode of action and advantages/disadvantages of hormonal contraceptives.

A population that exhibits birth rate identical to death rate implies ______.

Identify the incorrect statement regarding ‘Saheli’.

  • Statement I: It's an oral steroid contraceptive developed by ORI.
  • Statement II: It has a low contraceptive value and a high chance of side effects.

Which of the following statement is incorrect?

Which of the following is a hormone-releasing contraceptive?

The attributes of population but not of the individual are ______.

Name and explain a surgical contraceptive method that can be adopted by the male partner of a couple.

Given below are certain situations. Analyse the situation and suggest the name of suitable contraceptive device along with mode of action.

Situation Requirement of contraceptive for - Name of contraceptive device Mode of action
1 blocking the entry of sperms through cervix ______ ______
2 spacing between children ______ ______
3 effective emergency contraceptive ______ ______
4 terminal method to prevent any more pregnancy in female ______ ______
5 sterilization in male ______ ______

Match the columns :

  Column 'A'   Column 'B'
1 Mechanical means a Saheli
2 Physiological device b Jellies
3 Chemical device c Vasectomy
4 Permanent method d Diaphragm

Name any two birth control measures which have high chances of failure.

The technique used to block the passage of sperm in male is______.


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