Gone are the days when people relied on condoms, diaphragms, and spermicide to protect them from unwanted pregnancy. With the number of unwanted pregnancies both in teens and adults on the rise, more and more people are turning to other forms of contraceptive. With so many options on the market today, it is important to fully understand side effects and benefits of each type.
The phrase "The Pill" is used to refer to any type of birth control pill. There are over one dozen types of pills that are prescribed by doctors today. Some common brands are OrthoEvra Low, Yazmin, Seasonique, and Lutera. This prescription is filled monthly. You take a pill every day that increases specific hormones in your body to decrease the chance of pregnancy. It is important to take these at the same time every day for them to be most effective. There is one row of pills that are considered placebo pills, these do not contain hormones and trigger your body to menstruate. The pill's largest benefit is that it decreases acne in patients.
NuvaRing is rapidly becoming one of the favorite choices in birth control. This is a flexible, vaginal ring that is inserted once a month. You do not need to visit a doctor for this. Insert the ring and leave it in for three weeks. At the end of the third week, remove the ring for one week and replace it with a new one. As of 2010 more than half of all health insurances are not covering NuvaRing, however that is likely to change in the future as it becomes more popular. The only way to know if your insurance covers it or not is by contacting them or looking over their prescription drug list.
Implanon & Mirena
Two long term choices in birth control are Implanon and Mirena. Implanon is a small (approximately 2 inches long), flexible rod that is injected into your arm. It slowly releases hormones over the course of three years. Mirena is a modern day IUD. These work by irritating the inside of the uterus to prevent it from releasing eggs. Each month you need to check the threads on Mirena, this is explained to you by your gynecologists. Mirena can last up to five years. Spotting may occur during the use of either of these methods. Some women experience a complete stop in bleeding all together. Both of these can also cause weight gain and acne.
The Shot & The Patch
The least relied upon forms of birth control are the Depovera Shot and the birth control patch. Patients receive the shot once every three months. It releases a level of hormones that trick the body into believing it is in menopause. Patients often experience spotting throughout the year. The shot is also associate with drastic weight gain in patients. The patch is a clear hormonal patch that can be placed on the arm, back of shoulder, lower back or abdomen. It releases a steady flow of hormones for one month and then is replaced with a new patch.