Birth Control Q & A
What types of birth control are available?
There are several major categories of birth control. These include:
- Sterilization, such as tubal ligation and male vasectomy, that make it impossible for you to get pregnant
- Barrier methods, such as condoms or the diaphragm, that prevent the sperm from meeting the egg for fertilization
- Short-acting hormonal methods, such as the pill or Depo-Provera® shot, that are prescribed and require you to take action daily or monthly to alter your hormones to avoid pregnancy
- Long-acting reversible contraceptives, such as intrauterine devices (IUDs), that are implanted in your body and use hormones (or copper) to prevent pregnancy
- Natural rhythm methods that involve you avoiding intercourse on your most fertile days.
Each of these categories can be effective when used properly. Some are more convenient and effective than others. For example, IUDs are 99% effective in preventing pregnancy while condoms are only about 85% effective.
At Dr. Carlos Hernandez Obstetrics & Gynecology, Dr. Hernandez implants and removes IUDs as well as hormonal implants, such as Nexplanon®.
How do I determine which method is best?
Dr. Hernandez can help you ask the right questions to determine which type of birth control is best for you. He’ll have you consider questions such as:
- How often do you have sex?
- Are you in a monogamous relationship?
- Do you want to have a family one day and how soon?
- Do you have any existing health problems?
- What are the side effects of each method?
You’ll also want to consider how effective each method is in preventing pregnancy, the comfort of your partner, and whether or not you need protection against sexually transmitted diseases.
What methods of birth control protect against sexually transmitted diseases?
The only method of birth control that offers some protection are male and female condoms. Because these options don’t offer the greatest protection against pregnancy, it makes sense to use them in conjunction with an option such as the pill or an IUD to offer double protection.
Dr. Hernandez helps you find a birth control method that aligns with your existing health, your lifestyle, and your plans for a future family. Book an appointment by calling the office or scheduling online to learn more.