Top Contraceptive Methods You Know and Didn’t Know
When someone says “I’m on the pill”?
“On the pill” refers to taking any form of hormonal contraception. It’s usually used by people who want to avoid pregnancy. Hormonal methods work by preventing sperm from reaching the egg so fertilization doesn’t occur. There are many different types of pills available today: combined estrogen-progestogen pills; monophasic combination pills containing only one hormone; triphasic combination pills containing three hormones; continuous release implants releasing both estradiol and levonorgestrel over time; injectable forms of these same hormones; vaginal rings releasing both estradiol plus progesterone; contraceptive patches releasing norethindrone acetate; and emergency contraception pills like Plan B One-Step.
How do I know which method will suit me best?
There are several factors to consider before choosing a particular method. For example, some women prefer to use a patch because it releases its medication slowly into the bloodstream rather than immediately after application. Others may choose a ring because it provides protection against sexually transmitted infections. Still, others might find that using two separate products makes them feel too restricted. Some women simply don’t enjoy wearing anything around their neck or under their arms. Other options include the following:
Contraceptive Method 1- Oral Contraceptives
Combined oral contraceptives contain both estrogen and progestin. Both synthetic versions and natural alternatives exist. Natural alternatives include soy based formulations and herbal preparations. Synthetic versions include Ethinyl estradiol and gestodene. Ethinyl estradiol is derived from petroleum while gestodene comes from plants. All of these drugs act similarly to prevent conception. However, there are differences between each drug. The most important difference is in how long the active ingredient remains in your system. This can affect side effects and effectiveness. Another factor to consider is whether you need additional protection against STIs.
Contraceptive Method 2 Intrauterine Devices
IUDS come in various shapes and sizes. You insert them yourself through your vagina and up into your uterus where they remain until removed. IUDS provide similar benefits to those provided by other forms of contraception. They also offer added protection against STDs.
Contraceptive Method 3 Injectables
An injection contains either progestin alone or a mixture of progestin and estrogen. Progesterone works as a luteolytic agent, causing the lining of the womb to shed. Estrogens help regulate menstruation and maintain normal levels of sex hormones. A single shot lasts for about 3 months. It’s usually given every 12 weeks.
Contraceptive Method 4 – Implants
Implantable devices consist of small pellets made of polypropylene plastic coated with a thin layer of silicone rubber. Once inserted beneath the skin, they gradually dissolve and release hormones directly into the body. Like injections, implantable devices last anywhere from 6 months to 1 year depending on the brand.
Contraceptive Method 5 – Vaginal Rings
Vaginal rings deliver hormones via a flexible tube placed inside the vagina. Unlike implants, this device stays put once inserted. Hormones are released over time so that users experience less frequent bleeding. There are different types of vaginal rings available including NuvaRing®, Femring® and Ortho Evra®. Each has advantages and disadvantages.
Contraceptive Method 6 – Emergency Contraception Pills
Emergency contraception pills work within 24 hours of unprotected intercourse. Two brands are currently approved by the FDA for sale without prescription. One pill contains levonorgestrel and another one contains ulipristal acetate. Levonorgestrel acts like progesterone but does not cause pregnancy. Ulipristal acetate prevents ovulation. If taken before 5 days after unprotected sexual activity, emergency contraceptive pills will protect against pregnancy.
Contraceptive Method 7 – Condoms
Condoms are used to reduce risk of infection during sexual contact. Some condoms contain spermicide which kills any sexually transmitted diseases present. Others do not. Spermicides may be applied prior to use or incorporated into the condom itself.
Contraceptive Method 8 – Diaphragms
Diaphragm cups fit snugly around the cervix and hold back menstrual flow. When worn correctly, it provides some protection against STI transmission.
Contraceptive Method 9 – Spermicide
Spermicide is a chemical compound designed to kill sperm cells. The most commonly used spermicide is nonoxynol 9. Nonoxynol 9 was originally developed as a disinfectant. However, when tested in vitro, it killed human spermatozoa. In addition, studies show that women using nonoxynol 9 had higher rates of HIV infections than women using no form of contraception. Therefore, nonoxynol 9 should never be used as a method of family planning.
Surgical Method 1 – Hysterectomy
Hysterectomy removes both the uterus and fallopian tubes. This procedure can be done through laparotomy or laparoscopy. Laparoscopic hysterectomies are performed under general anesthesia while traditional open abdominal hysterectomies are performed under spinal or epidural anesthesia. Both procedures require hospitalization. A woman undergoing a total hysterectomy must take hormone replacement therapy postoperatively.
Surgical Method 2 – Oophorectomy
Removal of the ovaries also known as oophorectomy. Ovary removal is typically recommended if there is evidence of ovarian cysts or tumors. An oophorectomy is generally performed simultaneously with a bilateral salpingectomy. Bilateral salpingectomies remove all Fallopian tubes.
Surgical Method 3 – Ovarian Resection
Removing part of the ovary called an adnexectomy. Adnexectomy is usually indicated for benign conditions such as fibroids, polycystic ovary syndrome, and endometriosis. It is sometimes necessary to perform an adnexectomy along with other surgical procedures on the same side. For example, removing the ovaries could be combined with removal of the appendix.
Surgical Method 4 – Adhesiolysis
Opening up scar tissue from previous surgeries. Scar tissue forms between organs due to inflammation caused by surgery. Sometimes this scarring causes pain or difficulty moving parts of your body. During adhesiolysis, doctors cut away the scar tissue so you can move normally again.
Surgical Method 5 – Fibroid Tissue Ablation
Fibroids are growths inside the womb that grow over time. They can become painful and interfere with normal functioning. Doctors surgically remove these growths. There are two types of fibroid ablation techniques. One involves cutting out the entire mass of fibroid tissue. Another technique uses heat energy to destroy the tissue without damaging surrounding structures.
Surgical Method 6 – Uterine Artery Embolisation
Uterine artery embolisation blocks off the arteries supplying blood to the uterus. This reduces the amount of hormones produced by the ovaries. If left untreated, excessive levels of estrogen cause thickening of the lining of the uterus. Over time, this leads to heavy bleeding and infertility. The treatment may need to be repeated every few months until fertility returns.
Surgical Method 7 – Laparoscopic Tubal Ligation
Tubal ligation is a sterilizing operation where one or both Fallopian tubes are blocked. This prevents pregnancy after intercourse. It’s most commonly performed during childbirth but can be done earlier in life.
Surgical Method 8 – Tubal Reanastomosis
After tubal ligation, the tubes are reattached. This allows the person to conceive naturally.