What is Birth Control?
Definition: Birth control is any method used to prevent pregnancy.
There are many forms of birth control. But which one is the best birth control method for you? Since there is a huge array of contraceptive methods out there, here are some of the main types of birth control on the market today:
This includes birth control pills, shots, skin patches, the vaginal ring and the implant.
Hormonal methods usually use one of these two methods:
– Combination hormonal methods contain both estrogen and progestin. Typical combination methods include pills (often referred to as “The Pill”), skin patches and rings.
– Progestin-only hormonal methods can include pills, shots and implants.
Intrauterine devices (IUDs)
These are inserted into your uterus. The main types of IUSDs are the copper IUD and the hormonal IUD. When an IUD is put in place, it can last between 5-10 years, depending on the type. Side effects of birth control copper IUD’s can cause longer and heavier periods but the hormonal IUD can also cause spotting, breast tenderness and mood swings.
Barrier methods include:
– Cervical Cap
– Cervical Shield
– Male Condom
– Female Condom
– Spermicidal Foam
Barrier methods are generally not as effective as other contraceptive methods, but they can in some cases prevent pregnancy.
Natural Family Planning
Involves using the menstrual cycle as to determine when and when not to have sex to avoid pregnancy.
Permanent Birth Control
Permanent birth control is also known as sterilization, and prevents a woman from ever being able to get pregnant. Permanent birth control for women usually involves tubal ligation, also often referred to as tubes tied. Men can also undergo sterilization through a vasectomy.
There are two options for emergency contraception: pills and an intrauterine device (IUD). An emergency contraception pill is usually taken within a certain timeframe after having unprotected sex and an intrauterine device (IUD) is placed as soon as possible (a certain timeframe will usually be advised to you by your doctor) after having unprotected sex.