Birth Control Consultations
There are many options to birth control including natural family method, over the counter methods, prescription methods or sterilization.
At one time birth control was one size fits all, however, today there are very many options for women depending on lifestyle or personal preference. Dr. De Leon helps his patient’s decide what birth control is best for your lifestyle. Dr. De Leon helps his Patient’s make an informed, careful decision about what is best for their bodies and overall health. Not only is it important for you to discuss your need for unwanted pregnancy, it is also very important to discuss your protection from sexually transmitted diseases.
Every woman’s body is different and each birth control may react differently to your body, so regardless of what friends and family have told you, you should research all of your options.
What birth control options are available?
Here we have broken down the different types of birth control available. However, remember abstinence is the only preventative care that is 100% effective.
Barrier methods. These methods are placed in the vagina act as a barrier and prevent the sperm from reaching the egg. Types of these methods include male and female condoms, as well as the diaphragm, cervical cap and contraceptive sponge.
Hormonal methods. These methods work by interfering with a woman’s hormones in a non-harmful way. These methods can also be prescribed to help with abnormal uterine bleeding. Examples include birth control pills, as well as the vaginal ring (NuvaRing), contraceptive implant (Nexplanon), contraceptive injection (Depo-Provera) and the contraceptive patch (Ortho Evra).
Intrauterine device (IUD) and intrauterine system (IUS). IUD’s and IUS’s are “T” shaped devices that are inserted into the uterus. The IUD available is called the Copper T, and is good for up to 10 years. The copper in the IUD interferes with sperm movement and egg fertilization, and possibly prevents implantation. The IUS’s available are the Mirena and Skyla. Both of these devices contain a hormone called levonorgestrel, which is a hormone. Mirena works by thickening the cervical mucus to help prevent sperm from entering the cervix, inhibiting sperm from reaching or fertilizing your egg and thinning the lining of your uterus. The Mirena works for up to 5 years. Lastly, there is the Skyla. Skyla is an IUS that also releases the hormone levonorgestrel which prevents pregnancy, similar to the Mirena. The difference between Mirena and Skyla is Skyla only good for up to 3 years and can be placed in someone who has never had children.
Permanent Birth Control. Permanent is an option for women who do not wish to have any more children. Before you chose this method you should be counseled to make sure this is the option that you want to go with, because many times this is not reversible. Types of sterilization include tubal ligation, Essure and vasectomy for men. Essure is the first non-surgical method used for sterilization. It can be done in the office and can usually be performed with local anesthesia. A tubal ligation involves an out-patient surgery done in a surgical center and is performed by making small incisions on the abdomen. And finally, a vasectomy can be performed on men and is usually done by a urologist. This is less invasive than the tubal ligation and can be considered if the female does not want to be put under anesthesia. However before deciding on one of these methods you must be certain that you do not wish to have any more children.
Natural family planning. This method does not involve the use of any hormones or device. It is best to have a normal menstrual cycle if you wish to use this method. Examples include the rhythm, basal body temperature and cervical mucus methods.
Be aware that there is also emergency contraceptives that can be used to prevent pregnancy after unprotected sex. These include Plan B One Step, Choice One Dose and Ella.
What ever your questions are, Dr. De Leon can answer them.
What is the method’s effectiveness?
The more consistent you are with your birth control, the more effective it will be. IUD’s, contraceptive implants and sterilization require little effort, are associated with lower pregnancy rates. In contrast, methods that require monitoring fertility or periodic abstinence are associated with higher pregnancy rates. When it comes to contraception, choose the one that you are most comfortable with and what best suites your needs.
Is it reversible?
Your reproductive goals will help you decide on what contraceptive method is best for you. For a pregnancy that you are planning in the near future you may want a method that’s easily stopped or quickly reversible, such as oral contraceptives or a barrier method. If you want to become pregnant, but not in the near future, then you may want to consider and IUD or IUS. The IUD has a quick return to fertility, but it is expensive if you are going to use it only for a short period. of time. If you definitely do not want anymore children you can choose a permanent method, such as sterilization. Sometimes when you are at different stages of your life you may find that different contraceptives work better.
If and when you decide you want more information on contraceptives, Dr. De Leon is available to answer your questions.