Five facts about birth control in Kenya


As the world celebrates World Contraception Day, below are five facts about contraceptive use with data from the Kenya Demographic and Health Survey 2014 and the Performance Monitoring and Accountability 2020 sixth round.

  • Women in rural areas start having sex earlier than their urban counterparts. Rural women on average start having sex at age 16.7, which is about six years before they first use contraceptives and four years before they are married. Women in urban areas, on average, begin having sex at 18.4 years old, about three and a half years before they first use contraception and about four years before they are married.
  • On average, women have about two children by the time they start using birth control. The main reasons among women who do not use family planning methods but want to delay the next birth include: perception of not being at risk of pregnancy (60 percent), not married (54 percent) and fear of side effects or health concerns (29 percent).
  • Over time most women in Kenya prefer to use implants and injectables to other modern contraceptives.
  • Uptake of long-acting methods has been increasing over time since 2014.
  • Nearly half (46 percent) of sexually active women who do not want any more children or want to postpone the birth of their next child but do not use any family planning method say they are concerned about the side effects or health concerns of contraceptives.


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