Birth control is a necessity for many women. Whether there are medical issues at play, the timing isn't right, or you simply don't want children, there are many birth control options available, making it simple to determine which is best for you. Here are some of the most common options:
- Oral contraceptives, often called "the pill," are taken daily and contain hormones that prevent ovulation. They are highly effective at preventing pregnancy if taken consistently and correctly.
- The patch is a small, sticky patch that is placed on the skin and releases hormones to prevent ovulation. It must be changed weekly and can be worn while swimming and showering.
- The vaginal ring is a small, flexible ring that is inserted into the vagina and releases hormones to prevent ovulation. It must be replaced every three weeks and can be removed for intercourse.
- The injection is a shot of hormones that is given every three months to prevent ovulation. It is a long-acting birth control method and does not require daily attention.
- The implant is a small, flexible rod that is inserted under the skin and releases hormones to prevent ovulation. It can last up to three years and is a long-acting form of birth control. It is also reversible.
- Intrauterine devices (IUDs) are small, T-shaped devices that are attached inside the uterus to prevent pregnancy. There are two types of IUDs: hormonal and copper. Hormonal IUDs release a small amount of hormone to prevent ovulation, while copper IUDs create an inhospitable environment for sperm. IUDs can last for several years and are a long-acting, reversible form of birth control.
- Barrier methods of birth control, such as condoms and diaphragms, physically block sperm from entering the uterus. Condoms are a popular choice because they also protect against sexually transmitted infections.
It's important to talk to your healthcare provider about which type of birth control is right for you. The physicians at Lane OB/GYN can help you weigh the pros and cons of each option and choose the best one for your needs and lifestyle.