Which Birth Control is Right For Me?
Wondering which birth control option is right for you? Birth control is a very personal decision and can be included in your Postpartum Planning. Let’s take a look at what options are available.
IUDs (intrauterine devices) are the most effective birth control option available with over 99% effectiveness. They are as effective as tubal ligation, but less permanent. Depending on the IUD brand, they can last anywhere from 3-12 years. There are hormonal options as well as a nonhormonal copper IUD.
Getting an IUD is easy. You may get it placed at any time of your cycle, and you may be given a medicine to help dilate the cervix. A midwife uses a speculum and a special device to insert the T-shaped IUD into the uterus, then checks to ensure correct placement. Insertion usually takes about 5-10 minutes. Expect to take it easy for a few days after placement as it is common to experience cramping.
After having an IUD placed, you will have two strings coming from your cervix. Those are used for removal by a midwife later on. Do not tug on them, though you can feel for them to make sure the IUD is still in place.
Most IUDs are effective immediately after placement, though some may take up to a week to become effective.
Nexplanon is a small, thin rod that is inserted under the skin into the upper arm. It can remain effective for 3-4 years and is more than 99% effective.
Prior to inserting the implant, a midwife will use a local anesthetic to numb the arm. Once fully numb, the midwife will use a device that pierces through the skin and inserts the Nexplanon. It becomes effective seven days after being placed. Use a backup contraceptive in the meantime.
Your arm may be sore for about a week after insertion but should start feeling better quickly. Removal is simple and can be done at any time after getting your Nexplanon placed.
Birth control pills are taken every day and are 91% effective with typical use. Most birth control packs come in either 21 or 28-day supplies. The 28-day pack also has one week's worth of sugar pills to help you stay in the habit of taking them.
The downside of taking birth control pills is that they have to be taken roughly at the same time every day. If you miss a dose, take the dose as soon as you remember, or two the next day, and use a backup contraceptive until the pack is finished.
The depo shot is an injection that you receive every 3 months. If you want to conceive after getting off depo, it can take 12-14 weeks to become fertile again and may take up to a year to become pregnant.
The patch is a birth control that goes on certain parts of the body and is replaced every week. It is 91% effective with typical use. Check periodically that it is still sticking where you placed it.
The ring birth control is inserted vaginally and can last up to five weeks or a year, depending on which ring you use. The NuvaRing can also be used safely to skip periods if used continuously.
Natural Family Planning
Natural Family Planning depends entirely on you to prevent pregnancy. It entails observing your cervical mucous, Basal Body Temperature (BBT), and other symptoms throughout your cycle to find out your fertile days. During your fertile days, use backup contraception to avoid pregnancy.
- Condoms- the only contraceptive that can also prevent STIs and STDs
- Vaginal Diaphragm
Choosing a birth control that's right for you can depend on a variety of things, like breastfeeding, blood clotting disorders, and how long you would like to be on birth control.
For an in-depth consultation on which birth control is right for you, schedule an appointment today!