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Teen Pregnancy and Childcare Discuss teen pregnancy, childcare, conceiving, ovulation, fertility charting, and similar topics within this forum.

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Old 20-06-10, 05:53 AM   #1
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Default Birth Control

Anyone who is considering having sex, should give thought to birth control. Unless you are trying for a baby, it would be irresponsible to not use a form of birth control. There are many forms and some are more effective and reliable than other. Whatever your circumstances, there is a method of contraception that is suitable for you. It is the responsibility of both people to think about contraception i.e. women shouldn't be expected to go onto the pill and men shouldn't be expected to always make sure he has condoms. Birth control can be separated into two main groups: physical and behavioral. Each method has an effectiveness measured by how many women become pregnant within the first year of using it. The numbers quoted here are from typical use, (which includes when it has not been used correctly) as this shows its real-life use. Common misconceptions regarding birth control are also discussed here.

PHYSICAL METHODS

Barrier forms
- Condoms are the most popular form and come in male or female versions. The male condom is a latex (rubber) sheath that fits over the penis and prevents ejaculate from entering the vagina. The female condom is again made from latex but has a ring as each end. One end secures behind the pubic bone and the ring stays outside the vagina. This prevents ejaculate from reaching the cervix. Both male and female versions are designed to be used once and reusing a condom can result in it breaking. Male condoms have an effectiveness of 10 - 18% chance of pregnancy per year and female condoms 21% change of pregnancy per year.
- A contraceptive sponge is a small sponge that is inserted into the vagina before sex and absorbs and kills the sperm, preventing it from reaching the cervix. Sponges can be inserted up to 12 - 24 hours before sex and must stay in place for 6 hours after having sex. Their effectiveness ranges from 16-32% chance of pregnancy per year.
- The cervical cap fits over the cervix and prevents sperm from reaching it. Caps are the smallest physical contraceptive barrier and are held in place by either suction to cervix or by adhering to the walls of the vagina. Like sponges, it can be inserted 12 - 24 hours before sex and must stay in place for 6 hours after sex. Its effectiveness is a 15-32% chance of pregnancy per year.
- Diaphragms are inserted into the vagina and a spring around the rim creates a seal which prevents sperm from reaching the cervix. It must remain in place for 6-8 hours after sex and should be removed and cleaned every 24 hours. One diaphragm can last for about a year providing you do not gain or lose much weight or become pregnant during that period. If inserted correctly, the effectiveness can be as high as 1% chance of pregnancy per year but often this is not the case and so effectiveness is typically 40-58% chance of pregnancy per year.

All of these methods include spermicide which kills the sperm. It acts as a chemical barrier alongside the physical one from the device.


Hormonal forms
- 'The Pill' is a small tablet taken by women every day which prevents fertility. As well as preventing pregnancy, it also makes periods more regular and lighter. The pill comes either in packs of 21 or 28 but they work in exactly the same way. If using a pack of 21, you take pills for 3 weeks, then stop for a week to allow for a period. You are still protected from pregnancy when you are not taking pills. The extra 7 pills in the pack of 28 have no effect and you still have your period but they enable you to keep taking pills as part of a daily routine. If you remember to take your pill every day, the effectiveness is 0.3% chance of pregnancy per year but in reality, 8% chance per year is more common due to people forgetting to take it.
- 'The Patch' is similar to a sticking plaster or band aide and works in a similar way to the pill. One patch lasts a week and after wearing patches for 3 weeks, you have a break for a week to have a period. Like the pill, it also makes periods more regular and lighter. It's effectiveness is about 1 - 2% chance of pregnancy per year.
- 'NuvaRing' is a flexible plastic ring that is worn inside the vagina for three weeks and then removed for one week to have a period. The vaginal muscles hold the ring in place and can be left in during exercise or sex. It's effectiveness is a 1 - 2% chance of pregnancy per year.
- Injections can be given into your bottom or upper arm and depending on the type, can last 8 to 12 weeks. Periods may become irregular when you first have the injection with frequent spotting but often stop altogether after the second injection. After the first injection, it can take up to 2 weeks before it becomes effective and fertility can take 9 - 18 months to return after the last injection. It's effectiveness is a 3% chance of pregnancy per year.
- 'The Implant' used in most countries is called Implanon. It is a small rod (4cm long and 2mm thick) that is inserted under the skin of the upper arm. it contains a drug that is released gradually over a three year period however the implant can be removed at any time. It also makes periods lighter and 20% of women will stop having their period while the implant is in place. It is ideal as a long-term contraception method and has an effectiveness of 0.05% chance of pregnancy per year.

All of these contraception methods are for women. There are currently no hormonal forms available for men.
None of these contraception methods prevent transmission of sexually transmitted infections.


Emergency contraception
The "morning-after pill" works by preventing ovulation, fertilisation or implantation on an embryo. the effectiveness of emergency contraception is highest when taken within 12 hours of intercourse and declines over time. While most studies of emergency contraception have only enrolled women within 72 hours of unprotected intercourse, a 2002 study by the World Health Organization (WHO) suggested that reasonable effectiveness may continue for up to 120 hours (5 days) after intercourse. The effectiveness is calculated differently for emergency contraception and by taking a "morning-after pill" within 72 hours, your chance of getting pregnant is reduced by about 80%. i.e if 1,000 women have unprotected sex in the middle two weeks of their menstrual cycles, approximately 80 will become pregnant. Use of emergency contraceptive pills would reduce this number by 80%, to 16 women.


Intrauterine methods
The Intrauterine system is a T-shaped device that is inserted into the uterus and it works in several ways. Firstly, it releases a hormone similar to that ot The Pill. Secondly, a foreign object being present in the uterus causes the body to release substances that kill sperm and eggs. Also, cervical mucus is changed to obstruct the passage of sperm through the cervix. Once in place, it can stay there for 5 years and has an effectiveness of 0.2% chance of pregnancy per year.


Sterilisation
Surgical sterilisation is an operation for both men and women which results in them permanently unable to reproduce. For women, in involves blocking, tying or cutting the fallopian tubes (the tubes that connect the ovaries to the uterus) so that eggs cannot be released. For men, the tubes that connect the testicles to the prostate are cut and closed so that sperm is prevented from entering the seminal fluid. The effectiveness is a less than 1% chance of pregnancy per year after the operation. In some cases, the operation can be reversed but it is not certain and can cause further complications.


BEHAVIORAL METHODS

Fertility awareness
Fertility awareness involves observing a women's fertility signs to determine the fertile and infertile phases of her cycle. By charting her basal body temperature, cervical mucus and cervical position, it is possible to avoid pregnancy.
- Basal body temperature is taken first thing after waking up in the morning. In women, ovulation will cause her BBT to rise by between 0.3 and 0.9 ºC and lasts until the next menstruation. This temperature shift can be used to work out her infertility phase after ovulation.
- By observing her cervical mucus, and paying attention to the sensation as it passes the vulva, a woman can detect when her body is gearing up for ovulation, and also when ovulation has passed. When ovulation occurs, estrogen production drops slightly and progesterone starts to rise. The rise in progesterone causes a distinct change in the quantity and quality of mucus observed at the vulva.
- The cervix changes position in response to the same hormones that cause cervical mucus to be produced and to dry up. When a woman is in an infertile phase of her cycle, the cervix will be low in the vaginal canal; it will feel firm to the touch (like the tip of a person’s nose); and, the os – the opening in the cervix – will be relatively small, or ‘closed’. As a woman becomes more fertile, the cervix will rise higher in the vaginal canal; it will become softer to the touch (more like a person’s lips); and the os will become more open. After ovulation has occurred, the cervix will revert to its infertile position.

Coitus interruptus
Also known as the "pull-out method", coitus interruptus means to stop having sex and withdraw the penis from the vagina before ejaculation. The greatest risk is self-control and that the man cannot pull out in time. If some semen is left on the vulva, it can find its way into the female reproductive tract. It is not known for certain whether pre-ejaculate (precum) contains sperm but many scientists suspect that the pre-ejaculate picks up sperm in the urethra from the previous ejaculation. For this reason, it is now recommended that men should urinate after ejaculation to expel any remaining sperm. The effectiveness of this method is a 15-28% chance of pregnancy per year.

There is no risk of pregnancy from non-penetrative sex except for penis-near-vagina sex (genital rubbing, and the penis exiting from anal sex) where semen can be deposited near the entrance to the vagina and can itself travel along the vagina's lubricating fluids.


MISCONCEPTIONS
- The suggestion that douching with any substance immediately following intercourse works as a contraceptive is untrue. While it may seem like a sensible idea to try to wash the ejaculate out of the vagina, it is not likely to be effective. Due to the nature of the fluids and the structure of the female reproductive tract, douching most likely actually spreads semen further towards the uterus. Some slight spermicidal effect may occur if the douche solution is particularly acidic, but overall it is not a reliably effective method. Douching will not stop you getting pregnant or prevent you from catching an STD.
- It is untrue that a female cannot become pregnant the first time she has sex.
- While women are usually less fertile for the first few days of menstruation, it is a myth that a woman absolutely cannot get pregnant if she has sex during her period.
- Having sex in a hot tub does not prevent pregnancy, but may contribute to vaginal infections.
- Although some sex positions may encourage pregnancy, no sexual positions prevent pregnancy. Having sex while standing up or with a woman on top will not keep the sperm from entering the uterus. The force of ejaculation, the contractions of the uterus, as well as ability of the sperm to swim overrides gravity.
- Urinating after sex does not prevent pregnancy and is not a form of birth control, although it is often advised anyway to help prevent urinary tract infections.
- Toothpaste or cola cannot be used as effective contraceptives.
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Old 24-08-11, 10:50 AM   #2
 
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Default Re: Birth Control

This is good information, thank-you.
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Old 10-02-13, 06:47 AM   #3
 
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Default Re: Birth Control

Another misconception

Another untrue myth is that you can't get pregnant again while breastfeeding. As soon as menstruation recommences after childbirth you can become pregnant whether you are breastfeeding or not. I'm still breastfeeding and I'm pregnant.

Of course if you don't want to get pregnant then the only 100% safe method of birth control is not to have sex.
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Old 10-02-13, 06:55 AM   #4
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Default Re: Birth Control

GO ON THE PILL. IT CLEARS YOUR SKIN AND HELPS WITH PERIODS AS WELL AS PREVENTS PREGNANCY!










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Old 10-02-13, 10:28 AM   #5
 
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Default Re: Birth Control

The pill doesn't work for everyone - my aunt nearly died because of it! Always check your family history before going on the pill
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Old 10-03-13, 05:01 AM   #6
 
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Default Re: Birth Control

Thanks for this This has always confused me though, why do some women get pregnant even if they take the pill everyday at the same time? They aren't ovulating :| how can you get pregnant without ovulating? It also thickens mucas around the womb so sperm won't be able to get through.

I take it religiously and I haven't missed one (I've been taking it for about four months) I just don't get how it could go wrong, unless I started taking antibiotics or something.




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Old 08-06-13, 08:18 PM   #7
 
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Default Re: Birth Control

Implanon is the way to go!
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Old 11-06-13, 07:10 PM   #8
 
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Default Re: Birth Control

I think the best birth control method is a vasectomy. This is just some form of advice, my husband had a vasectomy and we were worry free for a long time. For men, don't worry, because when the time comes that you would like to bear a child, you can have the V reversed, just like my husband. We used Dr. Wilson who successfully did it. His site is www.microvasreversal.com in case you would be asking.
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