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New contraception help for teens

Primary care professionals are to be given a new toolkit to help them engage better with teenagers about sexuality and contraception.

Engaging Teenagers about Contraception has been developed by a team of sexual health experts who investigated teenagers' attitudes to sexual health and their experiences discussing contraception with healthcare professionals.

Dr Paula Briggs, lead clinician at the community sexual health service Improving Sexual health In Sefton, said the resultant toolkit provided a host of practical tips for GPs and sexual health professionals.

She said: "These range from advice on active listening, to recommending that teenagers are shown examples of contraceptives so they can see the actual size of different types, such as the IUD or implant. It also provides a list of available resources that we and teenagers will find useful."

The Bayer Schering Pharma-sponsored toolkit was introduced at the Current Choices conference, run by the Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare.

Research found there was a lack of awareness among teenagers about the sheer range of contraceptive options. Despite there being 15 different types of contraception available, 57.1% thought there were only 5-8.

The toolkit will be provided to all PCTs and health authorities in the UK for onward distribution to GP surgeries and sexual health and contraception services. Free copies of the toolkit are also available by emailing

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Faculty of Sexual & Reproductive Healthcare