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Your Birth Control Options

There’s this old saying that “our body is a temple.” We should respect it and take care of it. That could mean a multitude of things though, from getting the proper nutrients to making sure you are well-groomed. There is an endless list of options one can choose from. Specifically for ladies, birth control is one method in which we choose to protect and guard our bodies. Not only does it stop the swimmers from..uh..swimming, it also helps to regulate your cycle, control hormonal acne, and can even reduce period pain. Different types of birth control have different side effects though, so you should be careful as to which one you pick. There are several different forms, from lifestyle birth controls—such as abstinence or fertility awareness—to “every time usage” controls—such as the various types of condoms or a cervical cap. However, we shall only be discussing the most popular methods: the low maintenance and “used on schedule” birth controls.

 

LOW MAINTENANCE  METHODS:

The reason why these methods are labeled as low maintenance is that they don’t require daily dosages, but rather simple implants that you need to remove after a couple of years. All you need to worry about is heading over to your doctor’s office to have it inserted and removed.

 

  • IUD Birth Control

An IUD (Intrauterine Device) is “is a tiny device that's put into your uterus to prevent pregnancy” and is 99% effective in preventing pregnancy. It is labeled as an effective, long-term method of birth control that can last up to 12 years and looks like a small plastic T. The FDA has approved of five different brands and has divided them into two categories: copper IUDs (Paragard) and hormonal IUDs (Mirena, Kyleena, Liletta, and Skyla). The copper IUDs don’t contain any hormones and can protect you for up to 12 years, but many are skeptical of having a metal-type birth control inside of their system. The hormonal IUDs, however, use progestin to prevent pregnancy and each has varying protection periods that range from 3-7 years.

 

  • Birth Control Implant (Nexplanon)

Nexplanon is another low maintenance birth control that is, essentially, a tiny rod that is inserted into your bicep and can be replaced after five years. Nexoplanon is mostly known for being easily removable and being an even more non-permanent form of birth control than an IUD. It releases progestin into your body, which stops you from getting pregnant. Specifically, it stops sperm from swimming to eggs and is also able to stop eggs from ovulating.

 

"USED ON A SCHEDULE” METHODS:

These methods of birth control require timely dosages, which might be every few months, daily, and so forth. It is crucial that you get them in a timely fashion or it may not be as or at all effective.

 

  • Birth Control Shot

The Depo-Provera shot is a progestin injection that you must get every three months. Although it is only 94% preventative, it is still a simple and convenient control method. It is quite fast at being preventative, but that depends on when you acquire it. If you get your first shot within the first seven days after your period starts, then you will be immediately protected from pregnancy. Any other time, however, you will need to take on other preventative measures, such as a condom, for the first week. 

 

  • Birth Control Vaginal Ring

The NuvaRing is a small, flexible ring that you wear inside of your vagina that stops sperm from fertilizing with an egg through releasing estrogen and progestin. You absorb these hormones through the vaginal lining and this method has a 91% preventative rate. You must change it once a month, so you should always add on your calendar the removal and insertion dates. 

 

  • Birth Control Patch

The transdermal weekly patch is 91% effective and can only be worn on certain parts of the body (belly, upper arm, butt, or back). Just like the other methods, it releases hormones to prevent pregnancy, but the patch does so through the skin. The only FDA approved patch at the moment is the Xulane patch.

 

  • Birth Control Pill

Probably the most common method of birth control, “the pill” is an affordable method that you must take daily at a specific time. With it being 91% effective, it is a very effective and safe method of prevention. There are multiple different types of birth control pills, and each of them have their positive and negative side effects, so make sure to talk to your physician about the different types.

 

There are multiple reasons for wanting birth control that are not sexually related, but make sure to check with your insurance company to know your coverage AND talk to your doctor about which method is best for you.