Finding effective, safe contraception that helps you plan your family is easier than ever. But with so many choices available, choosing the best type of birth control for you is actually more complicated.
The expert medical practitioners at Rose Family Practice and Urgent Care Medical Group in Portland, Oregon, help you whittle down the choices to find the contraception that matches your present needs and future desires. Here are three questions you can use to help you narrow down which type of birth control is best for you today:
1. Do you only need birth control once in awhile?
If you only need contraception intermittently, then a barrier method might work best for you. Barrier methods prevent the sperm from reaching your egg, so that they can’t fertilize it. Barrier methods are also easily portable, so you can carry them with you wherever you go. You remove barrier birth control shortly after intercourse.
Two barrier methods have the advantage of protecting against sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), too: the male condom and the female condom. Condoms should be used with most other forms of birth control to keep you safe.
- Male condoms (85% effective)
- Female condoms (79%)
- Diaphragm with spermicide (88%)
- Cervical cap (71% to 86%)
- Birth control sponge (76% to 88%)
Barrier methods can be discontinued at any time if you want to become pregnant.
2. Do you want continuous protection against pregnancy?
If you want continuous protection that lasts for up to 10 years, long-term, but temporary, contraception could match your needs. Other than copper IUDs, continuous birth control relies on hormone therapy to prevent your ovaries from releasing eggs. To stay safe from STDs, use these methods in conjunction with condoms.
- Birth-control pill (taken daily — 91% effective)
- Birth-control skin patch (replace weekly — 91%)
- Birth-control shot (every three months — 94%)
- Arm implant (replace every three years — 99% )
- Vaginal ring (replace every three weeks — 98%)
- Intrauterine device (IUD) with hormones (replace every three to five years — 99%)
- Copper IUD without hormones (replace every five to 10 years — 99%)
Hormonal contraception and IUDs are reversible, so you can discontinue them whenever you decide to become pregnant. Your doctor needs to place and remove IUDs and arm implants at one of our convenient Rose Family Practice and Urgent Care Medical Group locations.
3. You’re sure you don’t ever want to be pregnant or have children.
If you’ve finished your family and are 100% sure you don’t want more or any children, permanent sterilization could be your best option. However, you could still get pregnant even months after your surgery, so continue to use condoms or other birth control until your doctor says it’s OK to stop. If you’re at risk for STDs, you should continue to use condoms for protection.
- Female tubal ligation (99% effective)
- Female Fallopian tube embolization (99%)
- Male vasectomy (99%)
Permanent sterilization is not reversible. If you still aren’t sure that this is the best method for you, your Rose City Urgent Care doctor helps you choose another method in the meantime.
When you’re ready to learn more about your birth control options, contact the experts at Rose Family Practice and Urgent Care Medical Group. You can call the friendly staff at one of our convenient Portland-area offices or use the online appointment form.