Are you trying to decide which form of birth control is right for you? Our Ridgewood, NJ, OB/GYN, Dr. Eric Bentolila, discusses common birth control methods and explains how they work.
Barrier methods prevent contact between the sperm and egg. Common methods include condoms, cervical caps, diaphragms, and contraceptive sponges.
Hormonal birth control
Pills, shots, implants, rings, and patches that contain the hormones estrogen and/or progestin prevent the monthly release of eggs from your ovaries, thicken cervical mucus to make it harder for sperm to enter your uterus, and thin the uterine lining.
Tiny T-shaped intrauterine devices (IUD) are inserted into your uterus, where they can remain for as long as 10 years, depending on the type. Hormonal IUDs release very small amounts of the hormone progestin every day to prevent pregnancy, while copper-based IUDs interfere with the swimming ability of sperm and make it difficult for them to actually fertilize an egg in the Fallopian tube.
If you're sure that your family is complete or you have no desire to have children, sterilization offers a permanent way to manage your fertility. During a tubal ligation, your Fallopian tubes are blocked or closed, preventing the release of eggs. The procedure only takes about 30 minutes and is usually performed during outpatient surgery, although it may also be performed after you give birth.
Things to think about when considering birth control options
Choosing a birth control method isn't always easy. Before you select a method, you'll want to think about effectiveness, cost, reversibility, and ease of use. You'll also want to consider any health issues that may prevent you from using certain birth control methods. For example, smoking, migraine headaches, previous strokes, heart disease, breast cancer, or uncontrolled high blood pressure, may make you a poor candidate for hormonal birth control. During your visit to our Ridgewood office, we'll provide information on birth control options that can help you manage your reproductive health.
Do you need a little help choosing the ideal birth control method for you? Call our Ridgewood, NJ, OB/GYN, Dr. Bentolila, at (201) 447-1700 to schedule an appointment.