Birth control allows women to determine if and when they are ready to become pregnant, and there have never been so many great options from which to choose. At Bethany Women’s Healthcare in Phoenix, Arizona, Giuseppe Ramunno, MD, Erron Kinsler, MD, and the rest of the team offer the full range of birth control methods. When you’re ready to explore the available choices, call to book a visit or schedule online.
Birth control methods can be divided into two categories: hormonal and barrier methods.
These birth control methods prevent unwanted pregnancy by altering your hormonal balance to prevent ovulation, thicken cervical mucus, or otherwise create an environment in which fertilization is difficult.
Some examples of hormonal birth control include:
These birth control methods prevent unwanted pregnancy by placing a physical barrier to prevent sperm from reaching an egg.
Some examples of barrier birth control include:
You can increase the effectiveness of barrier birth control methods by incorporating spermicide.
If you’re searching for a birth control method that is reliable and does not require you to remember daily pills or frequent office visits, consider long-term options like an IUD or birth control implant.
To get an IUD, you’ll need to come in to have the device placed within your uterus. Depending on the option you select, you’ll receive 3-12 years of protection.
The birth control implant is also an excellent “hands-free” option. Here again, the device must be inserted just beneath the surface of your skin in an in-office visit. Birth control implants provide up to five years of protection.
With both of these options, if you decide you’re ready to become pregnant, a simple office visit is all that’s needed to remove the device. Your normal fertility levels will return within a short period of time.
If you are certain you don’t want to become pregnant, it’s important to avoid birth control methods that don’t offer significant protection. The withdrawal method (pulling out) is a good example and is only around 78% effective. That’s because sperm can emerge even before or after ejaculation.
Fertility awareness, sometimes called the rhythm method, is ineffective in preventing unwanted pregnancy. This approach involves carefully tracking your menstrual cycle to predict which days you are most fertile and avoiding sex on those days. This method is only between 76-88% effective.
Unless you’re prepared to handle an unwanted pregnancy, these methods are inadvisable. If you have additional questions about your options, schedule a visit today online or over the phone.