Posts for category: OBGYN
There are many forms of contraception out there. It’s important to know your options.
All you have to do is go online, and you’ll soon discover many contraception options, perhaps even more than you even realized. Whether this is your first time considering contraception or you aren’t completely satisfied with the contraceptive method you are currently using, your OBGYN can provide birth control counseling to make a more informed decision regarding your sexual health.
What Types of Contraception Are Available?
Here are the different types of contraceptives available to you through your OBGYN,
- Hormonal birth control includes pills, patches, a vaginal ring, an injection or even an implant.
- Intrauterine device (IUD), which can be hormonal or non-hormonal (copper)
- Barrier methods such as diaphragms, condoms and sponges
- Natural methods such as abstinence
While all of these can be effective in preventing pregnancy, remember that only a condom can prevent the spread of sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
What Contraception is Right for Me?
There are lots of factors to consider when it comes to choosing contraception. Sitting down with your gynecologist to discuss what you’re looking for in your birth control will give your doctor an idea of which approach will be best.
For example, if you don’t think you’ll remember to take your medication every day at the same time, birth control pills might not be the best approach, but a vaginal ring, patch, injection or even an IUD may be a better option. An IUD may be an ideal option for women who want little hassle when it comes to contraception and aren't planning to become pregnant for several years.
The IUD is inserted into the vagina, where it will remain for several years (about 3-6 months for hormonal IUDs and up to 12 years for non-hormonal IUDs). An IUD comes in a hormonal and non-hormonal form, so even those who experience adverse side effects from hormonal birth control can still consider an IUD.
Another factor to consider is your tolerance to birth control medication. We know that some women experience adverse effects regarding hormonal contraception. If you are someone who has been having difficulty finding birth control that’s right for you, know there are several non-hormonal options out there, and your OBGYN can help you choose the one that’s right for you and your health.
Choosing the right contraception isn’t always easy. Fortunately, your OBGYN can sit down with you to discuss your options and help you choose the perfect one for you and your lifestyle.
Are you currently looking for an OBGYN? We know how crucial an OBGYN can be to a woman’s health and nothing is more important than finding an OBGYN that you trust to provide you with personal, gentle and customized care. Here’s why all women should have an OBGYN,
Preventive care isn’t just for your annual primary care visit. An OBGYN also provides preventive care to women of all ages, from puberty to postmenopausal. Preventive care ensures that you take all the necessary precautions and make healthy choices to support your overall health. Annual gynecological exams are one of the best preventive measures every woman should get to protect against and catch diseases early.
The next time you or your teen comes into the office for an annual gynecological exam, this is the perfect time to talk to us about the HPV vaccine. HPV is a widespread sexually transmitted illness (STI) that can increase the risk for cervical cancer. That’s why everyone who is sexually active or planning to become sexually active should get this vaccine. Children as young as 11 to 12 years old can get the HPV vaccine.
Discuss Birth Control
There are so many birth control options on the market these days that it can be challenging to know which one is best suited to your needs. That’s where an OBGYN comes in. Since they know you, your lifestyle and your health, they can provide recommendations on the best birth control options for you and help you make an informed decision about your family planning needs.
If you are sexually active, it’s essential that you practice safe sex. Regular STI testing can provide you and your partner peace of mind. Since many STIs don’t present with symptoms, it’s a good idea to get tested so you know your status. Talk with your OBGYN about whether you should get tested and how often you should.
Most moms-to-be are so focused on a healthy pregnancy and delivery that many can’t even focus on post-pregnancy healthy until they are in the thick of it. Unfortunately, the fourth trimester can profoundly impact a woman’s health and mental wellbeing. An OBGYN that can provide advice and support to guide you through this process can be invaluable.
Your gynecologist can help you decide which birth control is right for your needs.
There is a lot to consider regarding which birth control option is ideal for you. Do you want a hormonal or non-hormonal option? Are you good with taking a pill every day, or will you forget? It’s important to find a birth control option that fits your lifestyle, and what works well for one woman may not work well for someone else. This is where our OBGYN can help you decide.
First, Decide What’s Most Important to You
It’s important for our patients to vocalize what’s most important regarding the birth control they receive. One woman may be looking for one that also treats acne, while another may be looking for one that can help make their heavy, painful periods more manageable. Your OBGYN will go through your medical history and lifestyle to help you choose the proper birth control based on your preferences and needs.
Know Your Options
An OBGYN can offer you just about every type of birth control imaginable. Here are the most common types of birth control,
Birth control pills
More than 95 percent effective when taken correctly, birth control pills can also improve periods and reduce acne. The cons of birth control pills are that they can increase the risk for blood clots, and they aren’t as effective if you forget a dose or don’t take it at the same time every day.
Intrauterine devices (IUDs)
An excellent option for someone who wants to “set it and forget it,” an IUD is placed in the uterus, where it remains for years. There are hormonal and non-hormonal (copper IUD) options. They are 99 percent effective.
Another option for women who don’t want to take a pill every day, this plastic device is inserted just under the skin of the arm. This is another hormonal birth control option that is highly effective at preventing pregnancy but doesn’t require a vaginal exam or procedure to place it.
Birth Control Shot
Your OBGYN can also offer a birth control shot administered every three months, which is as effective as birth control pills. Some women also report that their periods improve while on the birth control shot. While you won’t have to take a pill every day, you will need to come into your OBGYN’s office every three months.
Birth Control Patch and Ring
The same hormones as the pill, the patch and ring make it easy to place and leave it for three weeks. Then you’ll need to remove it one week out of each month. Like birth control pills, they are 95 percent effective when used correctly.
Ready to discuss your birth control options? If so, an OBGYN is the ideal medical professional to talk to. They can sit down with you to discuss the different options based on your needs and lifestyle.
Effectiveness of Birth Control
When used correctly, birth control pills are 99 percent effective at preventing pregnancy; however, improper use of birth control pills can certainly decrease its efficacy. It’s important that you know exactly how to take birth control to protect against pregnancy. Here are some tips to protect yourself from getting pregnant while on “the pill”.
Don’t Miss a Dose
For birth control pills to be effective you must take them every day. So, what happens if you miss a day? Well, your hormone levels won’t remain consistent, which can increase your chances of getting pregnant. Set an alarm on your phone to remind yourself to take the pill. If you find that you keep forgetting to take your pill, you may want to talk to your gynecologist about other birth control options such as the patch, injection, or intrauterine devices (IUD) that you can “set and forget”.
Take the Dose at the Same Time
It’s also important that you are taking the pill at the same time every day to maintain proper hormone levels. This means taking the pill within a 3-hour window. If you miss that 3-hour window, you should use backup birth control such as condoms for the next two days. Setting an alarm on your phone can also ensure that you take the pill at the same time every day and that you also don’t miss a dose.
Certain Medications and Supplements May Interfere with Birth Control
Some medications can make birth control less effective and it’s important to know this to prevent an unwanted pregnancy. Certain medications that can decrease the effectiveness of birth control pills include,
- Anti-fungal medications
- Epilepsy medications
- Certain anti-viral medications
If you are interested in your family planning options and would like to talk to a qualified medical professional about which type of birth control is right for you, call your OBGYN today to schedule a consultation.
Here are some questions to ask yourself before considering birth control options,
What is most important to you when it comes to birth control?
This might seem like a rather broad question, so let’s get a little more specific. Some women are looking for a low or no hormone birth control that boasts fewer side effects while other women want a birth control option that can also help them get clearer skin. It’s important to talk with your OBGYN about what’s most important to you so that they can provide you with the best options for your specific needs.
Do you want to have a family and how soon?
If you are looking for a birth control option now but are thinking of having a baby in the next year, then this could help us determine which birth control option is best. Women who want to wait several years before starting a family, or who don’t want a family, may benefit from long-term birth control solutions such as intrauterine devices, which can remain in the uterus anywhere from three to ten years. Women who are looking to prevent pregnancy for only up to a year or two may benefit from more short-term options such as the pill or patch.
Will you remember your birth control?
Some women know that they won’t take the pill at the same time every day, so they want an easier option. If you think you’ll forget, or simply don’t want to deal with the daily reminders, then options such as the patch, ring, injection, or IUD can provide peace of mind knowing you are protected without having to take a pill every single day. For other women, taking a pill every day is no big deal. This is something to keep in mind.
Are you concerned about side effects?
Hormonal birth control does come with possible side effects, as compared to non-hormonal birth control (e.g. condoms; diaphragms; certain types of IUDs). Women who’ve tried hormonal birth control in the past and have dealt with mood swings and other issues may want to consider non-hormonal or low-hormone options. This is definitely something to discuss with your gynecologist.
It’s important to have the facts when it comes to birth control. There is a lot of information out there that can be daunting (not to mention that there is also a lot of misinformation out there). If in doubt, schedule a consultation with your OBGYN to help make the decision-making process easier.