Contraception is birth control, to put it bluntly; the general term for the use of a number of devices or acts that prevent impregnation during intercourse.

The word is formed by mashing together the Latin word contra, meaning "against" and a shortened form of the old French word concepcion, meaning "conception" — in other words: "against conception." Like so many scientific terms it was first coined in the nineteenth century, when the science of birth control was beginning to be seriously considered. Contraceptives — birth control devices — that had been around in cruder forms, began to be mass-produced and eventually socially accepted.

Definitions of contraception
  1. noun
    birth control by the use of devices (diaphragm or intrauterine device or condom) or drugs or surgery
    synonyms: contraceptive method
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    oral contraception
    contraception achieved by taking oral contraceptive pills
    surgical contraception
    contraception by surgical sterilization
    tubal ligation
    a sterilization procedure with women; both Fallopian tubes are tied in two places and the tubes removed in between the ligations
    surgical procedure that removes all or part of the vas deferens (usually as a means of sterilization); is sometimes reversible
    type of:
    birth control, birth prevention, family planning
    limiting the number of children born
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