Back in the day, birth control was hard to get at best and taboo at worst. Now you have more options than ever — and an open forum to discuss it. But that also means you have to wade through everything from advertisements to advice from friends to determine the best type for you.
Why not take your contraceptive cues from an expert?
Dr. Joseph Roofeh is passionate about helping women find the type of family planning method that works for them. Here, we take a closer look at your options and help you get one step closer to making the decision.
As far as we’re concerned, birth control is not and never should be one-size-fits-all. You have a lost list of options that fit your lifestyle, values, and needs. Here’s what you should know.
Also known as sterilization, permanent birth control involves a surgery that prevents pregnancy for the rest of your life. The procedure completely stops sperm from reaching an egg by removing the tube that carry sperm or eggs.
LARCs are typically intrauterine devices or hormonal implants. Our patients desire hands-off pregnancy prevention like LARCs because they don’t require any action. Depending on which you choose, you could be protected for between three and ten years.
This birth control stops your ovaries from releasing eggs, prohibits sperm from reaching the egg, or makes implantation unlikely or impossible.
If you change your mind and decide to have a family, we can remove the device or implant, and your body will naturally resume your menstruation and ovulation cycles.
You know short-acting hormonal birth control as pills, mini pills, patches, shots, and vaginal rings. This is by far the most popular and commonly used birth control. Short-acting methods release a steady supply of hormones that prevent your ovaries from releasing eggs or make it difficult for sperm to reach the egg.
You should only consider this option if you can remember to use it properly. Most short-acting methods require that you take a pill every day or come for a short time every few months.
Barrier methods are one of the most basic ways you can prevent pregnancy. As the name suggests, they put a barrier between sperm and egg, preventing them from meeting. If you opt for this type, you can head to your local drugstore and find many options, from condoms and diaphragms to sponges and cervical caps.
Bonus: barrier methods like condoms have the added benefit of protecting you from sexually transmitted diseases. You can use them in combination with your preferred type of birth control.
Spermicides are a type of contraceptive that is inserted into the vagina before penetration occurrs. The work by damaging or killing the sperm before it can travel to the uterus from the vagina.
Spermicides are available in the form of sponges, gel/jelly, foam, suppository, and film. The most effective way to use spermicides to prevent pregnancy and STDs, is with another method, such as a condom.
The rhythm method is for you if you’d like to go all-natural. This option involves paying close attention to your cycles and avoiding sex during the times of the month when you’re most fertile.
Ovulation kits you can buy at the store and apps you can download to your smartphone can help you keep careful track.
Of course, there’s always the option of abstinence — the only way to really make sure you won’t get pregnant. However, it takes no small amount of willpower, so talk to your partner before opting for abstinence.
Which birth control is best for you? That’s not always an easy question to answer because choosing birth control is incredibly personal.
Worried about hormones? You might consider barrier and rhythm methods. Looking for a hands-off approach? Permanent and long-acting methods could be the best fit.
You’d be right if it seems like a lot goes into creating a contraceptive plan. But Dr. Roofeh is standing by to help you wade through your options. When helping you decide, we talk to you about the following:
We take all of this into account before giving you our recommendations.
If you have more questions about birth control, don’t hesitate to request an appointment online or over the phone at our Century City, Los Angeles, California, office today.