Prevention is better than cure, especially in the context of exposing yourself to circumstances that you are not ready for. Can you imagine being struck by a life-long mishap just because you made a wrong decision or didn’t care much to research about the decision you are making?
‘Contraception’ sure is a heavy term. In simple words, it is the deliberate use of artificial techniques that has your sexual life on a leash; ie. it has the power to control your pregnancy as well as the future of your sexual life. In this article, we are going to be looking at some of the popular methods of contraception, including its advantages as well as disadvantages.
- Adopting The Calendar Rhythm Method
As the name suggests, this method involves keeping track of your period cycles, ovulation dates and the probability of you getting pregnant using a calendar. In the rhythm method, your previous menstrual cycles are marked on a calendar, with which you can predict your ovulation dates. During your ovulation, you are more likely to get pregnant and hence it is advised that you abstain from sexual intercourse during these fertile days. The advantage of this method is obviously the fact that it is natural and does not put your body through unwanted medications. However, we have to admit that charting out your activities depending on this can be quite risky too, as there is always room for calculation errors, changing lifestyles, bodily changes and stress-induced tension that may affect your period and ovulation dates.
- Keeping It Casual With A Condom
This is the most popular, as well as the easiest method to keep STIs and unwanted pregnancies away from your life. For this purpose, condoms must be used correctly and every single time you have sexual intercourse. The main disadvantage while depending on a condom is that it does not guarantee a 100% protection. A few ways by which you can ensure the maximum quality of a condom is by checking its expiry beforehand, avoiding exposure to heat and light, using water-based lubricants only, making sure not to tear it while opening, and preventing it from slipping off before and after an intercourse.
- Surgeries And Sterilization
If you need a permanent solution for birth control, then sterilization or surgery could be among your options. Vasectomy and tube ligation are the most common surgical methods of contraception in men and women respectively. A vasectomy is a procedure in which the vas deferens from each testicle is severed. Tube ligation is a procedure that blocks approximately an inch of each fallopian tube, thereby preventing the egg from travelling towards the uterus. Apart from these, people also opt for a hysterectomy, which is a surgical procedure for removing the uterus, and hysteroscopic sterilization, a non-surgical method in which a 1.6-inch long metal coil is inserted in each of the fallopian tubes. Although some of these procedures are reversible, the chances of going back to normal could be rare or expensive in most of the cases.
- Help From Hormonal Contraceptives
Hormonal Contraceptives such as birth control pills, patches and vaginal rings contain small amounts of man-made hormones that alter the body’s usual hormonal cycles, thereby preventing pregnancy. This is the reason why most women believe birth control pills, in most cases, are 99.9% effective. In addition to this, hormonal contraceptives also alter the cervical mucus, making it difficult for the sperm to go through the cervix and find the egg. Some of them even change the lining of the womb by hindering the implantation of the fertilized egg. Vaginal rings are usually placed inside a vagina for releasing the necessary hormones into the bloodstream to prevent pregnancy. A birth control patch resembles a plastic bandage and is usually stuck to the skin and replaced every week. The main disadvantages of using hormonal contraceptives include side effects such as headache, nausea, sore breasts and vaginal yeast infections. These hormones may also be the reason for fluctuating mood swings, spotting and a reduced desire to perform sexual intercourse.
The only criteria that you need to keep in mind while using contraception are that you are making a well-informed decision and that you are ready to take full responsibility for the decision you are making. However, it is always advised to consult your doctor before you jump to conclusions and trust information that is available on the internet. Remember, your body is your right, but it is also your responsibility to take good care of it!