Condoms come in male and female versions. The male condom covers the penis and catches the sperm after a man ejaculates. Male condoms are easy to use and can be bought in many places, including drugstores, without a prescription.
Condoms made of latex or polyurethane are the best way to reduce the risk of getting an STI. They can be used alone or with other birth control methods to protect against STIs. For example, you may decide to use the IUD or implant, which are very effective in preventing pregnancy, with a condom to protect against STIs.
The female condom is a thin plastic pouch that lines the vagina. It prevents sperm from reaching the uterus. It may be put in place up to 8 hours before you have sex. It can be bought in drugstores. It provides some protection against STIs.
Condoms work better to prevent pregnancy when used with a spermicide. Spermicides should only be used if you are at low risk of HIV infection.
Fertility Awareness-Based Methods
Fertility awareness is knowing and recognizing when the fertile time (when a woman can get pregnant) occurs in the menstrual cycle. Suppose you practice fertility awareness as a birth control method to prevent pregnancy. In that case, you need to avoid having sexual intercourse or use a barrier method of birth control, such as a condom, during the fertile period. If you are trying to get pregnant, you should have sexual intercourse on your productive days, ideally every day or every other day.
The IUD is a small, T-shaped plastic device inserted into and left inside the uterus. There are two types of IUDs:
The hormonal IUD releases the hormone progestin into the uterus. Different brands of hormonal IUDs last for various lengths of time. Depending on the brand, they are approved for up to 3 to 7 years of use.
The copper IUD releases copper into the uterus. This IUD does not contain hormones. It is approved for up to 10 years of use.
What is the skin patch?
The skin patch is a small (1.75 square inch) adhesive patch worn on the skin. It contains hormones that prevent pregnancy. The hormones are slowly released into your body through the skin.
A new patch is worn for three weeks in a row for a week. A patch is not worn during the fourth week, and you will have your period.
The patch can be worn on the buttocks, chest (excluding the breasts), upper back, arm, or abdomen. The patch can be worn during bathing, exercising, and swimming.
The cervical cap is a small, thin latex or plastic dome-shaped like a thimble. It fits tightly over the cervix. It would help if you had a prescription for it—a health care professional needs to do a pelvic exam to find the right size for you.
The cervical cap must be used with a spermicide. Birth control methods that need spermicides to work should only be used if you are at low risk of HIV infection.
After sex, the cap should be left in place for 6 hours but not longer than 48 hours total. You do not need to add more spermicide if you have sex again within this time frame.
The implant is a small plastic rod about the size of a matchstick that a health care professional inserts under the skin of the upper arm. It releases a hormone that prevents pregnancy. The implant is approved for up to 3 years of use. It may be a good choice if you do not want to remember to take a daily pill.
The birth control injection contains the hormone depot medroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA). This hormone protects against pregnancy for 13 weeks. You need four injections a year while using this form of birth control.
The DMPA in the injection has several effects that work together to prevent pregnancy:
It stops ovulation.
It thickens and decreases the amount of cervical mucus. This makes it difficult for sperm to enter the uterus and fertilize an egg.
It thins the lining of the uterus.
The vaginal ring is a flexible plastic ring that you insert into the upper vagina. It releases hormones that prevent pregnancy. The hormones are slowly released into your body. It is worn inside the vagina for 21 days and then removed for seven days. During those seven days, you will have your menstrual period. Then you insert a new ring.
The diaphragm is a small dome-shaped device made of latex or silicone that fits inside the vagina and covers the cervix. It would help if you had a prescription for it. With one type of diaphragm, a health care professional needs to do a pelvic exam to find the right size for you. Another diaphragm is “one size fits all.”
Diaphragms always are used with a spermicide. Birth control methods that need spermicides to work should only be used if you are at low risk of HIV infection.
A diaphragm must be left in place at least 6 hours after sex, but not more than 24 hours. If you have sex again within this time frame, you need to add more spermicide and wait another 6 hours before removing the diaphragm.
Birth control pills, also known as “the pill,” are the most prevalent hormonal method. You have to take the pill every day simultaneously each day. There are many types of birth control pills. A health care professional can help you choose the right one for you.
If you miss a pill, you need to know what to do. Read the directions that came with your pack of pills. You also may want to contact your health care professional.
What is the sponge, and how do I use it?
The sponge is a round device made of soft foam that contains spermicide. It is inserted into the vagina to cover the cervix and keeps sperm from entering the uterus. The spermicide also inactivates sperm. The sponge does not protect against STIs, including HIV.
The sponge can be put in up to 24 hours before sex and should be left in place for at least 6 hours after sex. The sponge should be worn for no longer than 30 hours total. If you have sex again in this time frame, you do not have to replace the sponge. Throw the sponge away after use.
The sponge is less effective in women who have given birth. If you want to use the sponge after having a baby, you should wait six weeks after giving birth until the uterus and cervix return to their standard size.
What should I think about when deciding to have sex? Choosing to have sex can be difficult. You should make up your mind when the time is right for you. If you are not ready for sex, say so. If you think you are prepared to have sex or already having sex—even now and then—you should take steps to avoid pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
Thousands of teens get pregnant each year because they do not use birth control correctly or do not use it. Many teens are deciding to protect themselves from pregnancy and STIs, and you can too.
Starting a family is one of the most important things you can do during your lifetime. Understanding when and with whom this happens is an essential element in the health and well-being of women. At Celebration Obstetrics and Gynecology, we want you to be both empowered and experience peace of mind to live your life on your terms.
What to Expect When Discussing Birth Control and Contraception. Understanding your lifestyle and medical history are core factors you must discuss with your provider. We make sure that you experience a welcoming, non-discriminating environment that emphasizes education and finding a choice that will enable you to live your best life. Our providers will guide you through various factors that you should consider when deciding on your birth control methods, including:
- Convenience of Use
- Cost of Birth Control in Florida
- Effectiveness and Duration
- Impact on Menstrual Cycle
- Medical Conditions
- Prevention of STDs
- Reversibility and Expected Return of Fertility
- Side Effects
To choose the proper birth control method for you, consider:
- How well it prevents pregnancy—Read Effectiveness of Birth Control Methods.
- How easy it is to use—Learn what is required for each method below.
- Whether it protects against STIs—If you are having sex, you also need to protect yourself from STIs.
- Whether you have any health problems—Some birth control methods may not be recommended if you have certain diseases or medical conditions. It would be best if you talked with your health care professional about any possible risks and the safety of each method to find the best option for you.
Celebration Obstetrics & Gynecology
Call Toll Free: (877) 800-0239
TWO LOCATIONS TO SERVE YOU!
410 Celebration Place Suite 208
Celebration, FL 34747
2209 North Blvd, Ste. C
Davenport, FL 33837