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womens rights - the history of birth control

As millennials, we tend to take a lot of things for granted. Consider something as simple as birth control: today, we are lucky to have a range of options available to us, but it wasn’t so long ago when there were hardly any options at all. September 26th 2016 is World Contraception Day, and, if you caught my recent post, you’ll know that #WCD2016 matters because it is a global movement that aims to empower women to make informed choices about their contraception and to create a world where every pregnancy is wanted.

If you, like me, need to brush up on your Birth Control history, take a minute to look through the following list of milestones in the history of birth control from 1914 to today. I mean, can you believe the first latex condoms were manufactured in 1920!? A lot has happened for our rights as women, and the choices we get to make, and for that I am so very thankful. Here are the milestones in the history of birth control that you need to know about:

1914 – The term Birth Control is coined by women’s rights activists and Planned Parenthood founder, Margaret Sanger

1920’s – The first latex condoms are manufactured

1932 – Dr. Elizabeth Bagshaw, one of Canada’s first female doctors, opens the first community birth control clinic in Canada

1960 – “The Pill” is available in Canada with a doctor’s prescription to women for therapeutics but not for contraception

1969 – Contraception is decriminalized in Canada

womens rights - the history of birth control

1994 – Public Health Agency of Canada developed the first “Guidelines for Sexual Health Education”

1996 – A study finds that on average, women miss 2.6 birth control pills per cycle

1999 -  Health Canada approves emergency contraceptive pill, better known as “the morning after pill”

2001 – A new hormonal birth control called an “Intrauterine System” is made available in Canada

2007 – World Contraception Day is celebrated for the first time

2010 – A study finds that half of all pregnancies in North America are unintended

2013 – An Intrauterine System with a lower hormone dose is introduced to Canada


The most recent innovation in birth control is long-acting non-daily birth control that’s extremely well-suited to the busy lives that we lead today. According to a recent survey, the most popular forms of contraception are the daily pill and condoms. However, millennial women lead busy lives, and contraception methods that require a daily routine can be difficult to keep up with. Considering I can hardly remember to take my vitamins on a daily basis, a daily pill is definitely not for me, and I wouldn’t want the risk of an unexpected pregnancy just because I couldn’t stay consistent with my daily intake. If you can relate, a non-acting non-daily contraceptive method may be alternative option for you too.

Now, take a minute to bring up the topic of contraception with the women around you, especially today!

For more information on what birth control is right for you, please visit




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