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Birth Control: What You Should Know

Now, I know what you’re thinking… birth control is a scary topic, and I will certainly agree with you. It’s scary with all the options and possible side effect that can result of pursuing a birth control method. Whether you’re using birth control as a form of contraception, use in controlling and maintaining menstrual cycles, treating acne and controlling symptoms of some severe uterine disorders, whatever your reasoning behind it, you deserve to be educated on all the forms of birth control that is out there. When I consulted my gynecologist about forms of birth control for contraception and maintaining normal menstrual cycles, I made sure to do my research before.

First and foremost, you need to know how apt you will be to taking a pill, shot or insertion, because if you can answer this honestly, then that will particularly decide which you go with. You have to know your body, your menstrual cycles and what kind of things you want to be putting in your body.

Now, let’s go through the different types of birth control option that can be offered by your gynecologist:

Birth Control Implant

This is a tiny, thin rod about the size of a match that is inserted under the skin of your upper arm. It releases the hormone progestin to stop you from getting pregnant. With the implant, it can last up to 4 years, but it’s not permanent and is 99% effective in the prevention of pregnancy.

Birth Control Pill

These are pills that you take every day to prevent pregnancy (most commonly used within females). There are many different brands of pills. The pill is safe, affordable, and 91% effective. Besides preventing pregnancy, the pill has other health benefits. The first three weeks are the actual birth control pills, then the last week is a sugar pill which allows you to get your period, you can skips these with certain types of pills (28-21 day packs), but consult your gynecologist before deciding.


Intrauterine Device (IUD) is a tiny device that’s put into your uterus to prevent pregnancy. It’s long-term, reversible, and one of the most effective birth control methods out there, approximately 99% effective. There are 5 different brands that are FDA approved for the use in the US. IUD can last and be effective up to 12 years.

Birth Control Vaginal Ring

The vaginal ring is a safe, simple, and affordable birth control method that you wear inside your vagina. The flexible rings prevent pregnancy by releasing hormones into the body. This is similar to the birth control pill in which you need to remove the ring and insert a new ring every cycle. This form of contraception is 91% effective, and you need to change the ring every month.

So, lovelies, before deciding on what type of contraception you think will be effective and beneficial for you, do your research. You definitely need to know what is exactly out there before just randomly deciding. Remember, it’s your body, YOU GET TO DECIDE. Remember, stay bold and stay true!

Senior at the University of Illinois-Chicago, studying Integrated Health, with a Nursing goal!
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