Thursday, April 26, 2012

Birth Control and the Importance of Choice

In weighing birth control options, "How much is plan B?" is a vital question to ask. Each birth control method differs from the other, and these differences aren't manifested only in terms of cost. They differ in the way they are administered, in how often they need to be used, in how long they stay effective, in their possible side effects, and others. Also, each birth control method needs to fit the needs of the person who wants to use it, so it's mostly on a case-by-case basis. However, before even beginning to weigh these options, people first need to understand exactly what this is all about.

Birth control or contraception is an important aspect of family planning. All living beings are precious, and the quality of life is something we need to guard conscientiously. When babies are born in this world, it should be because they are wanted. It should be because their parents are excited to see them and give them full, quality lives. Raising a child is an enormous responsibility, and only those who are ready to take that responsibility should do it. This is precisely one of the reasons why contraceptives exist. Contraceptives are there to prevent any unwanted pregnancies, thereby ensuring the quality of life - not only for the babies that do get born, but for the children who are already here. Various methods of birth control have been used to plan the spacing between children, and families are all the better for it. Timing is a very important part of family planning, because not only should they ask themselves if they are responsible enough to raise a child, they should also ask themselves if NOW is a good time to do so. This proactive stance parents take is admirable, because it shows that they are really giving a lot of thought into planning their family life.

Of course, this isn't just about family planning. It is also useful for a lot of health reasons. Some contraceptives have been used to prevent the spreading of sexually transmitted diseases, which continue to affect so many people everywhere in the world. We live in different times, and people are free to make their own choices, but to be responsible about those choices is another thing. No sexually active adult in the right mind would risk contracting a sexually transmitted disease if properly educated about it and the ways to prevent it. This is another reason why contraceptives exist.

At the end of the day, this is about the choices we make. Choosing to practice birth control is actually about taking responsibility for your sexual life. But the choice does not end there. Birth control is not a bag of jelly beans that people pick randomly from. You know your individual needs, so the next step is to fit those needs with the various options available. The bottom line is that it's important to make an informed choice when it comes to birth control, and because information is now readily available, this shouldn't be too hard to do.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Considering the Contraceptive IUD

The contraceptive IUD is a relatively no fuss, insert and forget form of birth control. It can provide an extremely high level of protection and when it works well with your body can be left for years at a time with minimal check ups.

Available in a hormonal and a copper IUD, both are small devices that are fitted inside a woman's uterus to prevent pregnancy. They work by changing the lining of the uterus making it inhospitable for pregnancy and preventing sperm from being able to travel through the uterus and fertilize eggs. The hormonal IUD also thickens mucus and stops sperm from entering the cervix.

The contraceptive IUD is perfect for busy women who don't want the concern of taking a daily pill or the fuss of other more cumbersome female contraceptives. Best suited to women in stable relationships who are at minimal risk of contracting a sexually transmitted infection, when the IUD works, it really is a peace of mind contraception.

The main advantages of the contraceptive IUD are that firstly it is very long lasting, the with hormonal IUD lasting up to five years and the copper IUD a staggering 10 years. Both IUD's are also relatively inexpensive.

The disadvantages vary depending on the type of IUD. For example the copper IUD can result in heavier more painful periods, where the hormonal IUD usually results in lighter periods or no bleeding at all. Both can cause abdominal pain and cramping and have a risk of developing pelvic inflammatory disease.

Although the contraceptive IUD does have some disadvantages and like all other forms of female contraception, possible side effects, one of the biggest adjustments when using the IUD is not necessarily physical but rather mental.

It can take quite a bit of getting used to not having to worry about falling pregnant or fretting about whether or not it's really working. Once of the contraceptive IUD's main advantages is that it cannot be felt by either the woman or her partner during intercourse, which at first can cause a little uncertainty when it is first being used. It can also take a while for some women to come to terms with having a permanent plastic or copper device sitting inside their uterus.

To offer piece of mind, most coils have a piece of string or fine nylon threads attached to the lower end that curtail through the cervix and into the upper vagina. Their purpose is to make for easy insertion and removal of the IUD (both of which can only by performed by a doctor) but they are also there so the woman can reach inside and ensure that the contraceptive IUD is still in place, sitting where it is supposed to be.

Doing this can also take a bit of getting used to and it can be rather unnerving if you can't locate the threads. In some instances, the threads can be pushed partially or completely out of the uterus. Or in rare cases, the device can slip through the wall of uterus and in to the pelvic area. This is called uterine perforation and in this event the IUD can only be removed during surgery.

However, for the majority of women who choose to use the IUD contraceptive, once their body has adjusted to the device enjoy the benefits that it provides. The main benefit being that once inside it is left to do the job it is meant to do.

All in all the side effects of intrauterine contraception are no more than other forms of contraception. If it works well with your lifestyle and you are in a monogamous relationship, the IUD can be very advantageous. Another huge benefit is that once removed, there is generally a very quick turnaround back to fertility.