Contraception is a method of preventing pregnancy by preventing the fertilized eggs to enter the uterus or preventing the eggs to be fertilized in first place.
There are several types of contraception and choosing the right one depends on several factors including current state of health, convenience and ease of use of contraception, side effects, risk factors and sometimes price. It is best to consult your doctor before you decide to use any kind of contraception.
It is good to remember that you can change the method of contraception any time you want. When you are trying to choose the type of contraception that is best for you take these things into consideration – how often do you have sexual intercourses, do you have a stable relationship, are you ready to make plans when it comes to sexual activity or do you want to use a type of contraception that does not depend on planning. Whatever your choice is you should use it properly in order to have good results.
Birth Control pills
Some birth control pills contain estrogen and progestin (so-called combined pills) while others contain only progestin.
Combined pills prevent ovulation. These pills are taken daily no matter how sexually active the woman is.
Progestin pills prevent pregnancy by thickening the cervical mucus making the eggs unreachable for the sperm. These pills have to be consumed daily just like combined pills.
There are two types of hormonal injections that can be used as contraception.
Injection with progesterone is injected once every three months and prevents pregnancy in three ways: by preventing ovulation, stops the sperm from reaching the egg and prevents implantation of a fertilized egg in the uterus. The method is almost 100 percent effective. It is injected into the muscle in the first five days of menstruation while the rest of the injections are given over a period of three months. Side effects include irregular bleeding, headaches and weight gain.
Injection with progesterone and estrogen is injected once a month. This method is also highly effective. Possible side effects include changes in menstrual cycle and weight gain.
Intrauterine Device (IUD)
This device looks like a plastic box with a floss attached on it and it is inserted into the uterus with the help of a doctor. It prevents the entry of sperm inside the fallopian tubes. After insertion, the copper IUD (small plastic device with copper wrapped around its grounds) can remain in place for up to 10 year. All intrauterine devices must be removed by a doctor. Keep in mind that IUD does not protect against sexually transmitted diseases. Possible side effects include cramps, pelvic inflammatory disease, bleeding and infertility.
The male condom is applied on erected penis before entering the vagina. Male condom creates a physical barrier between the vagina and the penis and prevents pregnancy and diseases.
A female condom is one that you inserted into the vagina instead of penis. It surrounds the penis during the intercourse and serves as protection for vaginal and cervical infections and of course – preventing pregnancy. The female condom can be inserted up to 24 hours before intercourse and can be used only once. The female condom is stronger than the male condom and should not be used together with a male condom.