You may know that now isn’t the right time for you to have a baby, so birth control is a must. But understanding your options and which is right for you isn’t always clear.
To help you choose the right birth control for your lifestyle and health, our physicians at the offices of Beth and Howard Braver, MD, offer birth control and birth control education as part of your comprehensive well-woman visit.
We listen to your concerns, take time to answer questions you have about birth control methods, and work as your partner to help you arrive at an informed decision about the right birth control.
What are my birth control options?
The good news is that you have many choices for birth control, so you can pick one that best suits your needs. These choices include:
- Male condoms
- Birth control pill
- Hormonal patch
- Birth control shot
- Intrauterine devices (IUDs)
Our compassionate team provides you with information about all available options. We are happy to answer your questions and address any concerns that arise during the decision-making process.
How do I choose a birth control method?
Part of choosing the right birth control is weighing different factors. We want you to consider your lifestyle and personal preferences when choosing a birth control method. Let’s take a closer look.
What types of protection do you need?
We may refer to these methods as birth control, but contraceptives can offer more than protection against unwanted pregnancy. As part of the decision-making process, think about the different types of protection you need.
For example, if you’re in a monogamous relationship and preventing pregnancy is your top priority, you may want to consider the most effective forms of birth control. These include hormone-based methods like IUDs, pills, implants, and patches.
But if you also need protection against sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), hormone-based birth control alone isn’t enough. Look for a method that provides protection from STDs, like condoms, to minimize your risk of exposure.
There’s a difference between a method’s effectiveness in the laboratory and its effectiveness in real life. For example, although condoms are about 98% effective in preventing pregnancy under laboratory settings, they’re only about 80% effective with actual use.
This means you may need to consider combining methods to get the best protection possible.
Will this method be easy for you to use?
A method of birth control can be extremely effective — unless you don’t use it. Methods that are difficult or cumbersome for you may not be the right choice, no matter their effectiveness. Consider ease of use when making your decision.
Honestly and openly reflect on your ability and willingness to use different options under different conditions, and don’t forget to think about the requirements for using them properly to ensure your protection.
For example, you need to take birth control pills at about the same time each day for them to work properly. And you must use condoms each and every time you have sex to provide you with protection from disease and pregnancy.
You know yourself best. If following through will be a challenge, you may want to consider other options. An IUD or implant can last for months and even years, and you don’t have to remember to do anything.
The right birth control method for you is the one that works with your lifestyle and personality.
What family planning stage are you in?
The stage your family is in matters in choosing a type of birth control. If you’ll be starting your family soon, consider a method of birth control that won’t interfere with your family planning.
Barrier methods, like condoms, don’t affect your ability to conceive once you stop using them. Other types of contraceptives, like those that use hormones, can require months for your hormone levels to return to normal and your fertility to return.
If your family is complete or if having a baby definitely isn’t part of your future, a permanent form of birth control, like sterilization, may take away the worry of an unexpected pregnancy. Talk to us about this in detail, since it’s not easy — and often impossible — to reverse sterilization.
Learn more about your birth control options and which is right for you by contacting us at our Aventura or Hollywood, Florida, office.