A few key dates (source: Birth Control Timeline from MedicineNet.com)
- 1965 - The U.S. Supreme Court strikes down the Comstock laws that banned contraception.
- 1976 - A T-shaped IUD is approved by the FDA.
- 1980s -The modern, low-dose, two- and three-phase birth control pills become available. 1992 - The FDA approves the first hormone shot to prevent pregnancy for several months at a time -- Depo Provera.
- 1998 - The first emergency contraception is approved by the FDA. Women can take Preven pills up to 72 hours after sex to prevent pregnancy.
- 2000-2002 - Four new birth control products are approved by the FDA a birth control "patch," slowly releases hormones through the skin; NuvaRing, a small, flexible ring is inserted into the vagina and releases hormones for three weeks. Lunelle is a monthly hormone injection. Mirena is an IUD effective for 5 years.
- 2003 - The first continuous birth control pill, which women take every day to suppress their periods and provide birth control, was approved in September. Seasonale schedules four menstrual periods a year.