Using contraceptive methods is the easiest method for a couple to avoid pregnancy and enjoy a tension free physical relationship. People have used birth control methods for thousands of years. Today, we have many safe and effective birth control methods available to us.
All of us who need birth control want to find the method that is best for us. If you're trying to choose, learning about each method may help you make your decision. Only you can decide what is best for you. Some contraceptives, such as condoms, will also protect a person from sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
The methods can be categorised into temporary and permanent methods:
1. Withdrawal method: This involves removing the penis from the vagina before ejaculating. Ejaculation should be away from the introitus. However, it requires extreme self-control on the part of your man.
2. Barrier methods: These methods prevent sperm from entering the uterus. Barrier methods are removable. Types of barrier methods include:
a. Condom: This is the oldest barrier method. A condom is a thin tube that the man puts over his penis. This keeps the sperm from getting to the egg. Condoms are also called rubbers.
b. Female condom: This is like a condom, but it goes in the woman's vagina.
c. Diaphragm and cervical cap: These are put in the woman's vagina to cover the cervix
d. Contraceptive sponge: This is a sponge that is filled with spermicide and is put in the woman's vagina over the cervix.
Barrier methods can be easy to use and have few side effects.
3. Hormonal methods: These can only be used by women. Hormonal methods cause changes in the woman's reproductive cycle and include birth control pills, birth control patches, emergency contraception pill, Implants and so on. Unlike barrier methods, hormonal methods do not interfere with sex.
4. Intrauterine methods: In this method an object called an intrauterine device or IUD is put in the woman's uterus. There are two types of IUD: the copper IUD or an IUD with hormones implanted on it. The hormonal IUD has better protection against pregnancy but costs more. You need not do anything once it is inserted. Also, it is effective for up to 10 years.
Of course, the permanent methods are more effective for preventing pregnancy than the temporary methods. The decision to proceed with a permanent method should only be made if a person is absolutely sure that no more children are desired. The biggest problems after a permanent procedure is regret that it was done.
Sterilization is a permanent form of birth control that prevents a woman from getting pregnant. These procedures usually are not reversible.
a. A sterilization implant is a non-surgical method for permanently blocking the fallopian tubes. The doctor places a coil in each Fallopian tube through the vagina and uterus block each tube completely. It may take up to 3 months to completely block the tubes.
b.Tubal ligation is a surgical procedure in which a doctor cuts the fallopian tubes. This procedure blocks the path between the ovaries and the uterus. The sperm cannot reach the egg to fertilize it and the egg cannot reach the uterus.
c. Vasectomy is a surgical procedure that consists in cutting the tubes that carry sperm. This procedure blocks the path between the testes and the urethra due to which the sperm cannot leave the testes and hence cannot reach the egg. It can take as long as 3 months for the procedure to be fully effective.