If you're not thrilled with the abundance of pink paper hearts surrounding your desk, this campaign for safe sex offers a different reason to celebrate February 14.
Fittingly, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released two reports Thursday on contraception use in the United States. The reports summarize data from the National Survey of Family Growth.
One, "Use of Emergency Contraception Among Women Aged 15-44," is the first ever published on emergency contraception by the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics.
Here are some of the most interesting highlights from that report:
-- Approximately 11% of women ages 15 to 44 used emergency contraception between 2006 and 2010, up 7% from 2002
-- Women between the ages of 20 and 24 were most likely to use emergency contraception; about 1 in 4 have done so
-- The two most common reasons for using emergency contraception are fear of birth control failure (45% of users) and having unprotected sex (49%)
-- Use of emergency contraception increased with education. In other words, women with a bachelor's degree were more likely to use it than women who had not completed high school.
The second report analyzed data from 1982 to 2010 to find trends in overall contraceptive use in the United States. The authors found:
-- 99% of sexually active women have used at least one contraceptive method sometime during their lifetime
-- Approximately 27% of 15- to 17-year-old women are having sex
-- Use of the birth control pill has remained steady since the mid-1990s at around 82%
-- More women (about 33%) are using other hormonal methods like an arm implant, injection or patch
-- Condom use is up to 93% from 52% in 1982
-- IUD use declined between 1982 and 2002, but increased to 7.7% between 2002 and 2010
-- Foreign-born Hispanic women are three times more likely to use IUDs than other groups
-- 60% of women use "withdrawal," more commonly called the pull-out method, as a form of birth control
-- Many women change birth control methods over the years; the median number of methods used is 3.1