Birth Control & STD’s
What is the most effective form of birth control
There are many birth control methods on the market today that are highly effective. The primary methods of birth control available include:
Barrier Methods - Generally speaking, barrier methods do not prevent pregnancy as effectively as hormonal methods or IUD's, and they must be used EVERY TIME that you have sex. Barrier methods Include condoms, sponges, and diaphragms.
Hormonal Methods - Statistically very good at preventing pregnancy. Hormonal methods include birth control pills, shots (Depo-Provera), and the vaginal ring.
Intrauterine Devices (IUD's) - IUD's are inserted into your uterus, work for 5-10 years at a time, and are a generally safe and effective way to prevent pregnancy. The Mirena IUD contains a hormone that can help with heavy periods and cramping.
Natural Family Planning - Also referred to as "fertility awareness," Natural Family Planning can be effective provided that you and your sexual partner are extremely careful, and are especially mindful of what times of the month are best to engage in sexual activity. Women practicing natural family planning are strongly encouraged to keep good records so as to know when they are fertile; and for times when you ARE fertile, you will need to abstain from sex, or use a barrier method.
With all of this in mind, it's important to remember that all women are different, and that the best way to find out what method is best for you is by consulting with a licensed OB GYN.
What are some of the potential side-effects of birth control pills?
Some possible side effects of birth control pills includes nausea, bloating, breast enlargement and tenderness, spotting between periods, decreased sex drive, and migraines. The best way to know which form of birth control will minimize undesirable side-effects is to consult with your physician first.
Do birth control pills protect against STD's?
No, It is extremely important to remember that birth control pills do NOT prevent against anything but unwanted pregnancies. No form of birth control will help prevent a sexually transmitted disease. There are only two proven methods that protect against both pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases: the male latex condom, and, the only full-proof protection, abstinence.
Do spermicides protect against STD's?
No, spermicides do NOT protect against the transmission of STD's.
How soon after stopping the birth control pill can you conceive?
Generally speaking, a woman may have only a two-week delay before she can ovulate again. Once ovulation resumes, you can once again become pregnant. On average, a woman’s period will follow about four to six weeks after the last pill is taken.
What if your period doesn't resume even after you stop taking the birth control pill?
If even after stopping the use of birth control pills you find that you are still not getting your period, you may have what is commonly known as post-pill amenorrhea. Typically your period should start again within three months after you stop taking the pill. If after 5-6 months you still haven't had your period, consult your physician immediately.
Where can I get birth control?
Where you get birth control depends on what method you eventually choose, although it should be noted that regardless of what method of birth control you decide on, it is still highly recommended that you consult with your gynecologist first so that you can get a licensed medical professional's opinion on what might be the best method for you-
Over The Counter
• Emergency Contraception (If under 17, a prescription is needed)
• Oral contraceptives (I.e the pill)
• Vaginal ring
• Skin patch
• Diaphragm (After a fitting with your physician)
• Shot/injection (Available at your physician's office)
• IUD (Inserted by a OB GYN)
• Male or female sterilization