Contraception Q & A
What contraceptive options are available?
Contraception options include a variety of choices, some of which are less invasive than others, including:
- Birth control pills
- Contraceptive injections
- Tubal ligations (permanent)
She also works closely with local urologists if a couple wants to pursue a vasectomy as an option for permanent male contraception.
What are the benefits of birth control pills?
The pill is 99.9% effective in preventing pregnancy when used properly. It’s noninvasive and easy. It works to interrupt the normal hormone cycles in women, so the body doesn’t release a viable egg for fertilization. Birth control pills also decrease your risk of ovarian and uterine cancer. They can improve unpleasant menstrual symptoms, such as cramping, pain, acne, PMS, and heavy periods–which can lead to anemia.
While the pill is effective in preventing pregnancy, it doesn’t protect against sexually transmitted diseases. Many versions of the pill exist. Dr. Hurst will talk to you about your needs and health history to determine the one that will work best for you and offer the fewest side effects.
What is the NuvaRing?
The NuvaRing is a small, flexible ring that you insert into your vagina to prevent pregnancy. You insert it yourself, much like a tampon, and remove it after three weeks. After a week without the NuvaRing, you can insert a new one. It releases hormones at a slow, continuous rate to interrupt the cycle that causes the development and release of an egg viable for pregnancy.
What is an IUD?
Dr, Hurst implants an intrauterine device (IUD) in your uterus to prevent pregnancy. It’s a long-term option but completely reversible. Several companies provide IUDs, but most work for three to 10 years in preventing unwanted pregnancies.
What is a contraceptive injection?
A contraceptive injection uses a progesterone hormone to prevent you from becoming pregnant. Depo-Provera® is the most common one used; you receive the injection once every 12 weeks. You might choose this option if you often forget to take oral contraceptives or can’t take the pill for some reason.
What is a tubal ligation?
A tubal ligation is a permanent method of birth control. Dr. Hurst seals off the fallopian tubes so no sperm can reach the eggs, and thus fertilization cannot occur. The advantages of a tubal ligation are that it prevents pregnancy without you having to think about birth control or experiencing possible hormonal effects of the pill, NuvaRing, or injections. But, a tubal ligation is a surgical procedure and is irreversible.