Birth Control Procedures

Family Planning Methods

Birth control is an important factor that needs to be considered after you have had a child. So, it is vital for you to decide on the type of birth control you will be using, and to make an appropriate plan during your pregnancy. You can use most birth control methods soon after childbirth, although some methods may not be encouraged if you are breast-feeding.

Some of the factors which have to be considered when selecting an appropriate birth control method are:

  • Effectiveness and permanence of the particular method
  • Availability of the method i.e. if the method can be used without a medical prescription,      provider visit, or consent of parents (in the case of minors)
  • Affordability
  • Possible health risks
  • The willingness of a partner to support the particular birth control method
  • Condoms, combined with spermicides, are the best choice for preventing HIV and other     sexually transmitted infections.

Barrier methods for birth control

Condoms

A condom is essentially a thin latex or polyurethane sheath. While the male condom is placed around the erect penis, the female condom is placed within the vagina prior to the sexual intercourse. It is important that a condom is worn at all times during intercourse in order to prevent a possible pregnancy. Condoms are generally available in drug and grocery stores and in family planning clinics. You do not require a medical prescription to buy condoms.

Diaphragm and cervical cap

A diaphragm refers to a flexible rubber cup that contains spermicidal cream or jelly. It is inserted into the vagina over the cervix prior to the sexual intercourse, so as to prevent sperm from reaching the uterus.

The diaphragm should be left in position for at least 6 to 8 hours after the intercourse.

Your health care provider will prescribe the exact type and size of the diaphragm that is suitable for you.

However, there could be irritation and allergic reactions to the diaphragm or spermicide, and urinary tract infection.

Vaginal sponge

Vaginal contraceptive sponges refer to soft synthetic sponges which are saturated with a spermicide. Before the sexual intercourse, the sponge should be moistened, inserted into the vagina, and positioned over the cervix.
Hormonal methods

Certain birth control methods make use of hormones such as Estrogen and Progestin, or progestin alone. Both these hormones prevent the release of egg from a woman’s ovary during her menstrual cycle or ovulation. Progestins also prevent sperm from entering the uterus. Some of the other commonly used hormonal birth control methods include:
Implants- Implants are small rods which are surgically implanted underneath the skin. The implants release a significant dose of progestin in order to prevent ovulation.
Progestin injections are administered into the muscles of the upper arm or buttocks once every 3 months. The progestin injections help to prevent ovulation.
The vaginal ring: It is a flexible ring around 2 inches wide which is inserted into the vagina. It releases the hormones, progestin and estrogen, and thus helps to prevent ovulation.

Intrauterine device (IUD)

The IUD is essentially a small plastic or copper device placed within the woman’s uterus by the health care provider. IUDs may have to be left in position for 5 to 10 years, based on the device used. They are completely safe and function well when compared to other birth control methods. However, some of the complications include cramps, severe bleeding and perforation of the uterus.

Permanent birth control

Permanent birth control (Sterilization) refers to a surgical procedure performed in men or women who do not wish to have any (or more) children. It is one of the most effective permanent birth control.

Tubal ligation or implants

Tubal ligation is a surgical process in which the fallopian tubes, which transfer the eggs from the ovaries to the uterus, are either tied, cut, or blocked. Some of the latest nonsurgical sterilization technique uses a small metal coil, or tubal implant camera, which is inserted into each of the fallopian tubes. In course of time, scar tissue develops around each tubal implant and permanently blocks the tubes. You have to use another form of birth control for s period of 3 months after undergoing tubal implants. After 3 months, an X-ray has to be taken to ensure that the tubes are closed.

Vasectomy

In this surgical procedure, the vas deferens or the tubes that transport sperm from the testicles to the seminal fluid (semen) are cut and blocked. As a result, the semen will no longer contain sperm. However, this does not disrupt a man’s ability to enjoy sex or to have an erection..