This study assessed the frequency of use, knowledge, and attitudes toward the contraceptive sponge in sexually active, inner-city, black and Hispanic adolescent females. A 54-item, self-administered questionnaire was completed by 208 adolescents (mean age 17.9 years) attending a gynecology/family planning clinic within a comprehensive adolescent health center. Twenty-nine (13.9%) had never used any birth control, and 49 (23.6%) had not used any form of birth control in the 3 months prior to the study. Fifty-three (25.5%) of the adolescents had used a less reliable method such as rhythm and/or withdrawal. The birth control method used least was the sponge. Only four (1.9%) of the adolescents had used the sponge in the 3 months prior to the study, and only ten (4.8%) had ever used it. Knowledge of the correct use of the sponge was poor. However, 69 (44.8%) of the 156 girls who knew about the sponge had a positive attitude toward it, and only 19% said they did not like it. The contraceptive sponge may be a viable option for adolescents, particularly those who are not using birth control or who are using a less reliable method.
- Contraceptive sponge Birth control methods