This is a sponsored guest post.
More than often, we see people talking about birth control and its importance. However, with so many options available on the market, choosing the right birth control for your lifestyle can be a bit difficult. But no more! Whether you’re planning to switch to contraceptive pills, patch or ring, or something more long-lasting like an IUD, injection or an implant, here are some tips which can help you make the right choice that’s not only best for your body but your overall health as well.
Do Justice to Yourself
If you’re just considering switching between two birth control methods or if it’s your first time, the foremost thing to do is to ask yourself whether or not your chosen method would fit into your lifestyle. Most gynecologists suggest that contraceptive pills are the safest birth control option. The downside is that it is important not to miss even a single pill and take it, more or less, at the same time every day. But, if you do not trust yourself on this, the longer-acting methods might serve as a better bet for you.
Besides this, below-mentioned are some important questions which you must keep in mind when choosing birth control.
- Are you comfortable having monthly periods or can you do without them?
- Are you comfortable using a birth control method which has comparatively lesser chances of success?
- Would you be fine with stopping the use of a method whenever you want?
- Are you planning to get pregnant in the next couple of months?
- Are you involved in a sexual relationship, which might put you at the risk of acquiring a sexually transmitted infection?
Know Your Risks
It is always a good idea to seek the assistance of a healthcare provider before making a decision. This is because; they will be in a better position to help you decide which option best would suit your body depending upon your health history and lifestyle. Estrogen-containing birth control is usually not recommended for ladies who have high blood pressure, migraine with aura, severe diabetes, estrogen-sensitive cancer, a well-known genetic predisposition to estrogen-sensitive cancer, a history of blood clots in the leg, or any kind of heart disease. Women above the age of 35 who smoke cigarettes should also avoid estrogen-containing birth control options.
Assess the Side Effects of Each Birth Control Method
Many pieces of research and extensive studies showcase that while the bodies of most women are able to tolerate the pills and other hormonal methods very well, there are many who experience strong mood swings, weight gain, a dip in libido, etc. However, medical practitioners claim that birth control pills cannot be held culprit alone for women experiencing such side effects. There can be many other factors which can cause the onset of these effects, such as lifestyle, stress level, physical activities, one’s diet and so on. A drop in libido, for instance, may be due to a woman’s fluctuating sexual involvement, and her mood swings may be because of her increasing stress level.
In the case of progestin-only methods, one of the primary side effects is experiencing irregular spotting. Using this method, you’re most likely to experience irregular and unusual periods, with light, unexpected bleeding. This is because, progestin makes the lining of the uterus thinner than usual, which comes out without prior warning.
Other known side effects of using birth control include unexpected weight gain from injections and crampier, heavier periods from the installation of copper T or non-hormonal IUD in the uterus.
Eye for the Positive Signs As Well
As a matter of fact, not all side effects are negative, and not all women switch to birth control to avoid pregnancy. For instance, combined hormonal contraception, which typically includes the pill, patch, and ring, is a great way to control acne in some women. Irregular periods, heavy bleeding and PMS symptoms also get alleviated with certain birth control methods.
Consider the Cost
Most birth control options today are easily available on the market. However, their cost can one of the major factors behind choosing one option and letting go of the other no matter how better the option may be. Contraceptive pills are comparatively the cheapest option among all. Longer-acting reversible contraception, like copper T, IUDs and implants, on the other hand, are the most expensive ones. If your insurance covers contraception, you can and should (if your health history and gynecologist suggest) opt for the longer-acting birth control methods.
The Bottoms Line
Birth control is one of the best means to not only keep yourself from conceiving but also dealing with a lot of bodily issues. In the below-given chart, we’ve listed some of the most common and widely recommend birth control means with their respective advantages and disadvantages.
|Birth Control Pills||98-99%||● Reversible effects
● Lessens menstrual cramps
● Regulates menstrual cycle
● Reduces acne and the risk of developing ovarian as well as endometrial cancer
|● Must be taken every day, without fail
● Women above the age of 35 who smoke cannot use it
● No protection again STDs
● May interfere with one’s on-going medications
|Contraceptive Injection||98-99%||● Taken 4 times a year
● Effects are reversible
● Reduces the chances of developing endometrial cancer
|● Irregular spotting and bleeding (Sometimes)
● No protection against STDs
|Intra-uterine Device (IUD)||99.2 – 99.4%||● Lasts up to 5 years
● No interruption in sexual intercourse
|● May cause irregular spotting and bleeding
● IUD can fall out
● No protection against STDs
● Seeking the assistance of a physician for insertion of IUD is imperative
|Spermicide||82% (effectiveness increases when used with condoms, diaphragm, etc.)||● May serve as a lubricant;
● Can be used by women who smoke and/or breastfeed
|● Does not offer any protection against STDs;
● Can cause the onset of allergic reactions in some cases
|Diaphragm (suggested with spermicide)||94%||● Offers protection against some types of STDs
● Can have sexual intercourse within 6-8 hours of insertion.
|● Proper insertion is necessary
● The chances of dislodging during intercourse are high
● Can cause allergic reactions in some causes.