Things To Think About
The exact time of ovulation can vary from month to month, even in women with regular periods.
The natural family planning method also works best if an expert teaches you how to monitor your temperature and cervical mucus. Reading this article probably wont be enough to teach you how to do this accurately.
This method does not work if you are also taking hormones as the hormones will affect the signs you are looking for.
Why Choose Nonhormonal Birth Control
Hormonal contraceptives, like the birth control pill and hormonal implants, change a womanâs hormone levels to keep her body from getting pregnant. They can be convenient and reliable. But they might not be ideal choices for some people for reasons like:
- You have to remember to take the pill at the same time every day.
- You need to see a doctor for prescriptions or to insert the device.
- They donât protect you from sexually transmitted diseases.
- They may raise your chances for blood clots or breast cancer, or have side effects like mood swings or weight gain.
- You may not have sex often enough to need ongoing birth control.
- You may pass hormones to your baby if youâre breastfeeding.
Can You Make Contraception Part Of Your Daily Routine
If you’re a well-organised person with a reasonably regular routine, you have a wide choice of contraception.
This is because you’re less likely to forget about your contraception by forgetting to take a pill or reapply a patch, for example.
You may want to use a method that you only need to use when you have sex, such as the male or female condom, or you may prefer a method that you need to take every day, such as the pill.
Or you may want to consider methods like the patch, injection or implant, which you do not need to use every day or each time you have sex.
The list below shows how often you need to use, replace or take each contraceptive method.
Once you have looked at the list, ask your GP or a doctor or nurse at your local clinic for more details.
Methods used each time you have sex:
Methods taken on a daily basis:
- the pill , but there are some types of 21-day pill where you have a week “off” each month
Methods replaced every week:
Don’t Miss: How Do You Know If You Have Hormone Problems
A Different Nonhormonal Birth Control Option
- By Huma Farid, MD, Contributor
Until recently, people seeking hormone-free birth control have found few options available. The most effective and long-lasting nonhormonal option is the copper intrauterine device . Barrier methods sometimes are paired with spermicide to boost pregnancy prevention rates, or spermicides may be used alone . Apps and tests to track fertile days bring a high-tech sheen to the so-called rhythm method, but most ob/gyns do not recommend these as a way to prevent pregnancy.
Not until 2020 did the FDA approve a new nonhormonal birth control, Phexxi, which came on the market last fall. Should you try it if youre looking for a new option?
What Does Nonhormonal Birth Control Mean
Nonhormonal birth control is any contraceptive method that doesnt alter your bodys natural hormones. Instead, it uses other strategies to prevent a pregnancy.
Barrier methods are among the most common types of nonhormonal birth control. They work by blocking the sperm from reaching the uterus. Barrier methods include:
- copper intrauterine devices
Some people use behavioral changes as a type of nonhormonal birth control. This includes things like:
- pull-out method, or withdrawal
You can often use more than one type of nonhormonal birth control at the same time to further reduce your risk of a pregnancy.
If youre looking for a permanent way to prevent a pregnancy, you can also consider surgery, such as a vasectomy or abdominal, laparoscopic, or hysteroscopic sterilization.
No matter which option you choose, there are risks and benefits involved. Some methods can be more effective than others, while certain types can cause unwanted side effects. You may also need a prescription for some types of nonhormonal birth control.
Connect with a doctor to discuss the pros and cons of various types of birth control.
Recommended Reading: Where Do You Get Melatonin
Birth Control Sponge Effectiveness
Of 100 women who have never had a baby and who use the sponge in a typical year, about 14 will get pregnant. This means it is 86% effective.
Does the sponge protect against sexually transmitted diseases?
Non Hormonal Birth Control
People use non-hormonal birth control methods when they dont want to get pregnant and continue having a healthy sex life. Non-hormonal birth control methods do not have any potential risks or side-effects.
It is best to consider using non-hormonal birth control options if:
Also Check: How Many Mg Of Melatonin For An Adult
Birth Control Sponge Risks
Disadvantages of the birth control sponge include:
- It may be hard to remove.
- You can still get an STD.
- Some women have a burning feeling or an allergic reaction.
- Spermicide can irritate your genitals, raising your risk of HIV.
- Leaving a sponge in place for too long could lead to toxic shock syndrome .
Pick a different birth control method if youâre on your period or if you recently gave birth, had a miscarriage, or had an abortion. You also shouldnât use the sponge if you get a lot of urinary tract infections or have had TSS before.
How Does It Work
- The contraceptive action of the sponge is primarily provided by the spermicide, which is slowly released over a period of 24 hours.
- The spermicide absorbs and traps the sperm and destroys the sperm cell membrane.
- The sponge itself also provides a physical barrier to prevent sperm from entering the cervix.
- The sponge comes in one size only and is available in pharmacies without a prescription.
You May Like: How To Balance Hormones Naturally To Get Pregnant
Spot On Period Tracker
Spot On is a period and birth control tracking mobile app available for Android and iOS phones that can help you stay on top of your birth control method and track your cycle. The app provides customized appointment reminders, and puts birth control and sexual health resources from the experts at Planned Parenthood at your fingertips.
Being Informed May Help A Woman Choose The Right Birth Control For Her
Nearly half of all pregnancies every year in the United States are not planned, yet around one-third of women who could become pregnant don’t use contraception. Why might a woman who doesn’t want to become pregnant not use birth control? Reasons vary but may include lack of access or knowledge, infrequent sex or concerns about how their health will be affected.
When it comes to helping women decide to use birth control, information often plays an important role. One large study found that teenage girls who had thorough sex education before becoming sexually active were more likely to use some type of birth control when they had sex.
Understanding the differences between hormonal and non-hormonal birth control can help you make the best choice for your body and your lifestyle.
Don’t Miss: Where To Get Female Hormones
How Do You Know Which Is The Best Non
While this is a matter of purely personal choice, one can also consult a doctor who can guide you to the most effective non-hormonal birth control for you. One may also decide on the basis of religion, culture and health history. The doctor may check your history for possible reactions to medicines and guide you accordingly. One can even check with their insurance agents to know which type of birth control is covered in their schemes.
Which Types Of Birth Control Help Prevent Sexually Transmitted Infections
Only two types can protect you from STIs, including HIV: male condoms and female condoms.4
While condoms are the best way to prevent STIs if you have sex, they are not the most effective type of birth control. If you have sex, the best way to prevent both STIs and pregnancy is to use what is called “dual protection.” Dual protection means you use a condom to prevent STIs each time you have sex, and at the same time, you use a more effective form of birth control, such as an IUD, implant, or shot.
You May Like: How Do You Get Your Testosterone Levels Up
Where’s The Demand For New Birth Control
The Roe decision amplifies the urgency.
With more open conversation about contraceptive needs, the next decade could be an exciting time for nonhormonal contraception, Lai said. These conversations, he believes, could help pharmaceutical investors see a real demand.
NIH funds early stage nonhormonal birth control research, but Johnston agreed that investment in the methods isnt where it needs to be. Products cant get to pharmacy shelves unless the biopharma industry steps in to fund drug development, but its difficult to determine how many women want hormone-free birth control options. Pharmaceutical companies usually want to see clear demand before investing in a product.
Worldwide, there were more than 151 million users on the hormonal pill in 2019, according to to a report from the United Nations. Analysts say sales of all hormonal contraceptives made the global market for these options worth more than $15 billion in 2020 a value thats estimated to grow to more than $20 billion by 2030.
From a business perspective, the contraceptive market seems to be healthy and growing, reads a 2020 commentary in the journal Nature. Yet the demand from women for transformational change is not reflected as a reduction in sales.
Hormonal contraceptives work tremendously well, said Johnston. But they basically involve the changing of the expression of hundreds, if not thousands, of genes, to give you the effect.
What Are The Disadvantages Of Non
Non-hormonal IUDs can make your periods heavier and cause cramping, especially in the first 3-6 months. And you may have some IUD cramps when you first get your IUD. For many people, these side effects get better once your body gets used to the IUD. So if you can stick it out for a few months, theres a good chance the side effects will ease up. Read more about side effects.
Its normal to have some cramping during your period with a copper IUD. But if your cramps are really bad and over-the-counter medicine doesnt help, talk with your nurse or doctor. Its also a good idea to call your nurse or doctor if youre still having bad IUD cramps after a year, or you have pain or IUD cramps when youre not on your period this can be a sign your IUD has moved, and they may want to check to make sure its still in place.
IUDs are one of the most effective and convenient ways to prevent pregnancy, but they don’t protect you from sexually transmitted infections. So use condoms with your IUD every time you have sex to lower the chance of getting or spreading STDs.
Side Effects Of Hormonal Birth Control Can Include:
- Being over 35 years old
If you don’t have any of these conditions, Ross says hormonal birth control is an equally viable option for you, as it is not inherently unhealthy. There are also low-dose and ultra-low-dose forms of hormonal birth control available, which may be another alternative for you.
Note: Hormonal birth control methods do not protect against sexually transmitted infections . Barrier methods like condoms can help prevent STIs, although the only reliable way to prevent them is to abstain from sexual activity.
What If You Cannot Use Hormonal Contraceptives
Some contraceptives work by using hormones that are similar to the hormones women produce naturally. These hormones are oestrogen and progestogen.
Contraceptives that contain these hormones aren’t suitable for some women, such as those who have medical conditions like breast cancer.
Not all contraceptive methods use hormones. Some work in other ways, including:
Recommended Reading: What Hormones Cause Hair Loss In Females
Who Is Phexxi Best For
“Phexxi is great for those who are looking for contraceptive alternatives, don’t desire hormones, and are possibly not sexually active consistently,” Jessica Shepherd, MD, ob-gyn, CEO and founder of Sanctum Med Wellness, told Health. Phexxi can be a good fit for those who aren’t interested in taking a daily pill or using a long-acting form of birth control like an implant, IUD, or ring, Dr. Shepherd said.
Phexxi may also be an important choice for people who can’t use hormonal forms of birth control. “Not every woman can use a hormonal birth controlwomen who are at risk for blood clots, hormone-driven cancers like certain forms of breast cancer and other gynecological cancers may be advised to use a non-hormonal method,” Dr. Wider said.
For women who use lifestyle methodslike fertility awareness of the withdrawal or “pull-out” methodPhexxi may be a good addition to their routine, , an ob/gyn at The Women’s Group of Northwestern, in Chicago, told Health. “At worst, it’s 86% effective, but it could be much better if women are watching their cycle,” Dr. Levitt said.
There’s also this to consider, Dr. Wider added: “Non-hormonal methods would likely eliminate some unwanted side effects that women can experience on hormonal birth control like mood swings and weight gain.” If you are especially concerned about any of these things, talk to your healthcare provider about trying Phexxi.
How Effective Is This Type Of Birth Control
FDA approval for this product is based on a multisite study that enrolled sexually active women ages 18 to 35 . Women who participated had regular menstrual cycles and a single male partner. They agreed to just use Phexxi for birth control except for morning-after, emergency birth control, if necessary and engage in heterosexual intercourse at least three times during each cycle throughout the study.
Results collected over seven cycles show that nearly 14% of 1,183 women who completed the study became pregnant.
Overall, the efficacy rate of Phexxi is 86% for typical use.
Phexxi can be combined with some other forms of birth control to increase the odds of preventing pregnancy. Compared with other nonhormonal birth control methods it seems to be more effective at preventing pregnancy than withdrawal natural family planning barrier methods such as condoms and diaphragms and most spermicides . However, as a nonhormonal option, the copper intrauterine device is far more effective.
Don’t Miss: How To Balance Hormones Before Period
Does Breastfeeding Prevent Pregnancy
Breastfeeding can be a short-term method of birth control in very specific situations. The risk of pregnancy is less than 2 in 100 if all three of these describe you:1
- You have a baby who is less than 6 months old
- You exclusively breastfeed, meaning that you only feed your baby your breastmilk all of the time
- You have not gotten a period after childbirth
Talk to your doctor about birth control if you do not want to get pregnant while nursing.
Diaphragm And Cervical Cap
Unintended pregnancy in one year of use: 17% typical use, 16% perfect use .
Diaphragms and cervical caps are barrier methods that are both placed over the cervix and used with spermicide . Cervical caps are smaller than diaphragms and fit tightly around the cervix . Diaphragms stay in place by sitting behind the pubic bone . Diaphragms and cervical caps do not protect against STIs . Both are available in the USA with a prescription.
There is also a one-size-fits-all diaphragm, Caya . A healthcare provider may have you insert Caya during the visit and then perform a pelvic exam to make sure that it was placed in the right position . Water-based spermicide should also be used with Caya .
Also Check: Can You Get Addicted To Melatonin
Types Of External Condoms
Latex: The most common. Only water or silicone-based lubricants can be used with latex condoms .
Plastic : May be useful for those with allergies and can be used with oil-based lubes .
Lambskin: May be useful for those with latex allergies. They do not protect against STIs because of tiny pores that could allow viruses to pass through . You can use any type of lubrication with these condoms .
Natural Planning As A Non
This method isnt only hormone-free but also doesnt require the use of any special products or surgical intervention. Natural planning consists of programming sexual activity depending on the stage of the menstrual cycle.
The goal is to avoid having sex on fertile days. Its a method that can be effective when the cycle is regular. However, there are many risks of imprecision that depend on nature.
Don’t Miss: Does Viagra Help Low Testosterone
Fertility Awareness Methods/natural Family Planning
Fertility awareness is a form of natural birth control which uses fertility markers to track ovulation daily. By recording indicators like cervical position, cervical fluid, and basal body temperature, you can determine when you are at risk of pregnancy, and only use contraceptives or refrain from intercourse during that time.
Failure rate: 5/100 unplanned pregnancies when used exactly as directed.