There are many contraceptive options available. Your OB/GYN can work with you to help determine which best matches your needs.
Oral Contraceptive Pills
The pill is either a combination of the hormones estrogen and progestin, or just progestin, taken by mouth. Typically, you take active birth control pills (those containing the hormones) for three weeks each month, then inactive or dummy pills for one week, or the last week is a pill-free week. The pill stops ovulation, thickens cervical mucus, and thins the lining of the uterus to help block sperm.
This is a small patch you place on your upper shoulder, upper back, abdomen, or hip that delivers estrogen and progestin through the skin. Similar to birth control pills, the hormones suppress ovulation, thicken cervical mucus, and thin the uterine lining.
This is a small plastic ring inserted into the vagina, which slowly releases hormones into the body. You insert the ring into the vagina yourself. The ring releases estrogen and progestin, which are absorbed through the vaginal tissues. The hormones in the ring prevent ovulation, thicken cervical mucus to block sperm, and thin the uterine lining, which may prevent an egg from implanting.
A doctor gives an injection of progestin every 12 weeks. The injection prevents ovulation, thickens cervical mucus to block sperm, and thins the uterine lining, which may prevent an egg from implanting.
Intrauterine Device (IUD) Hormonal and Non Hormonal
The hormonal IUD is a small, T-shaped device that a doctor must insert and remove. It stays in your uterus for up to five year. A small amount of a progestin (a synthetic form of the female hormone progesterone) is released every day, which thins the lining of the uterus and thickens cervical mucus, acting as a barrier to sperm.
The non hormonal copper IUD is inserted and removed by a doctor. It lasts up to 10 years. The copper IUD stops the sperm from reaching the egg. It can also prevent the egg from attaching to the lining of the uterus.
Implantable Hormonal Contraception
The implant is a matchstick-sized rod inserted into the skin of your upper arm by your doctor. Local anesthetic is required. It takes about a minute to put in and two minutes to take out, and works for three years. A small amount of progestin is released, suppressing ovulation, thickening the cervical mucus, and thinning the lining of the uterus to help block sperm.
Spermicides are foams, jellies, tablets, creams, suppositories, or dissolvable films. Chemicals within the spermicide destroy the sperm, preventing it from fertilizing an egg.
Using a condom is a barrier method of birth control and the only form of male birth control. A thin sheath is rolled over the penis before intercourse, capturing sperm and preventing semen from entering the vagina.
Laproscopic Tubal Ligation
A tubal ligation is considered a permanent method of birth control. The fallopian tubes are cut or blocked, which prevents pregnancy by blocking the egg’s path to the sperm and uterus. Laparoscopy makes it possible to see and do the surgery through small incisions in the abdomen. These smaller incision reduce recovery time after surgery and the risk of complications. In most cases, a woman can leave the surgery facility within 4 hours after laparoscopy.
A vasectomy is considered a permanent method of birth control. A vasectomy prevents the release of sperm when a man ejaculates. During a vasectomy, the vas deferens from each testicle is clamped, cut, or otherwise sealed. This prevents sperm from mixing with the semen that is ejaculated from the penis. An egg cannot be fertilized when there are no sperm in the semen. The testicles continue to produce sperm, but the sperm are reabsorbed by the body. The procedure takes about 20 to 30 minutes and can be done in an office or clinic.
For more information
on any contraceptive method or to schedule a consultation with one of our gynecologists, please call (507) 389-8522.