Deciding which birth control option for you can leave you spinning. The options are numerous and the features differ.
Some cost more; some are not as effective, while others might not suit a particular body type. You have to weigh all the options before you jump in and select the one.
Here are the different birth control options available to you and a few tips to help you select the right one:
- Female condom
All of us have got our men to use male condoms, but very few of us have tried using a female condom. Yes, they do exist, and are nearly as effective as male condoms.
They are similar to the diaphragm and are placed over the cervix.They do offer protection against STI’s as well.
The added benefit in this option is that women get the freedom to protect themselves from getting pregnant.
This is the second most popular form of birth control after the pill.You have to place a small plastic ring inside your vagina.
It has to be removed for a week for you to experience your regular monthly periods. You have to replace it every month and it is easy to insert.
A note of caution: This method of birth control should be avoided by people who smoke and women who have the risk of developing blood clots.
An injection to prevent pregnancy is inserted in your arm or buttocks called Depo-Provera and is said to be effective for up to 12 weeks.
It is said to be almost 100% effective and the only side effect being that it doesn’t give protection against STI’s.
Women who suffer from blood clotting issues, breast cancer or even women who smoke should steer clear of this option.
The patch is attached to your arm, the buttocks or even the stomach. It releases estrogen and progestin into the blood stream that makes the effectiveness of birth control almost 99% effective.
The patch should be replaced every week on the same day for three weeks and should not be worn on the 4th week of the month so that you can experience your monthly period.
Again as most birth control methods, if you are at risk of clots in the blood, kindly avoid this option.
- The Pill
This is the most popular and talked about birth control measure. Its success depends on the timing of consuming your pill. If you want it to be 99% effective then you just will have to remember the time you popped your last pill.
It is best avoided by smokers and those women who have heart disease and diabetes.
Intrauterine device is the most effective long term birth contraception. It has to be surgically inserted and it prevents the sperm from meeting the eggs. This is an expensive form of birth control and can last for up to 10 years.
So if you haven’t had kids or you plan to have them in the future, this option is not one for you. It can be painful for those who haven’t experienced child birth.
An implant is a more long term solution to birth control. A stick or small rod is inserted in your arm that prevents you from getting pregnant. This rod lasts up to 3 years and is said to be 100 % effective.
The cost of this option is on the higher side and the other down side being that it doesn’t provide protection against STI’s.
A diaphragm is a dome shaped covering, that covers the cervix and prevents women from getting pregnant. It needs to be inserted and fitted to the vaginal muscles by a doctor an hour of two prior to the act of sex and has to be removed 6-8 hours later.
The success of this method lies in the way the diaphragm has been fitted. If you have experienced a major fluctuation in your weight, it might be a good idea to get the doctor check and see if it is fitted properly.
If you are prone to bladder infections, it might be a good idea to skip this option.
Visit your doctor and discuss all the options with her and see which one she recommends based on your body type and purpose and come to a conclusion.
Written by: Rasha Ashraf