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Contraception and sexual health

If you’ve recently had a baby, are breastfeeding or have not yet had a period again following a birth, you need to think carefully about contraception and practising safe sex.


The NHS offers free and confidential contraceptive services, including to young people under 16, and others regardless of disability, gender, ethnicity, religion and sexual orientation. Talk to your GP, health visitor, school nurse or find out more from the NHS website.

Following the birth of a child, you may want to get advice on contraception and explore the options that suit you and your partner best.

You may find information from the Family Planning Association useful too.

Sexual health

Good sexual health is about being confident and in control and also about keeping yourself and others safe. It includes reducing your risk of getting sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and having contraception that suits you and is reliable

  • Contraception and pregnancy: Many types of contraception are available. While they are designed to prevent pregnancy, not all will protect against sexually transmitted infections so you may also need to use a condom.
  • Sexually transmitted infections (STIs): Most STIs can be treated with medication, and those that cannot be cured can be managed. The sooner they are treated, the less long term damage will be caused

Useful links

Page last reviewed: 22-11-2023

Next review due: 22-11-2026