Which Type of Birth Control is Best for Me?

The good news is there are more birth control options available than ever. The challenge is choosing the right one for your situation and lifestyle. Fortunately, there are questions you can discuss with your doctor to help select what's best for you. 

Dr. Thomas Hatchett and our highly trained team at Habersham OBGYN in Demorest, Georgia provide personalized care for women at all stages of their lives. Whether you're exploring your contraception options, having a baby, or managing menopause, we combine state-of-the-art treatment with a compassionate environment to give you the best care possible.

Choosing the right birth control

Few decisions are as personal as deciding which type of contraception to use. Each has pros and cons, and there is no one right answer that works for everyone. General questions to consider include: 

Types of birth control

Intrauterine devices (IUDs)

An IUD is a device that is placed inside the uterus. Copper IUDs release a small amount of the metal to prevent contraception and can work for up to 10 years. Hormonal IUDs prevent pregnancy by releasing hormones. Depending on the type, they can be effective for anywhere from three to five years.

IUDs are very successful with failure rates of less than one percent. They can also be removed any time if you decide you want to get pregnant or switch to a different type of birth control. Sexually transmitted diseases are not prevented by an IUD.

Hormonal methods

A wide variety of hormonal contraception options are available. These types prevent an egg from being released each month from a woman's ovaries and other changes in the body to discourage pregnancy. The longest-lasting includes a hormonal IUD at three to five years and an implant (a small rod placed under the skin) at three years. 

Other choices include a shot administered by a doctor or nurse four times a year, a ring in the vagina that is changed out each month, and the patch, which is put on the skin once a week. The final possibility is birth control pills, which are taken daily.

Hormonal birth control failure rates vary from less than one percent to about seven percent depending on the type used. They also do not protect against STDs.

Barrier methods

Male and female condoms as well as the diaphragm, cervical cap, and sponge are examples of barrier methods of contraception that work by keeping the sperm from reaching the egg and fertilizing it. Failure rates are often higher with these types of birth control methods, but male and female condoms can help prevent HIV and other STDs when used correctly.

Sterilization

If you don’t want to have children or feel your family size is complete, sterilization is an option. Women can have a tubal ligation, which cuts the tubes that transport eggs into the uterus, or a tubal implant which blocks them. Men could have a vasectomy.

Choosing which type of birth control is best for you can be daunting. Let us help — book online or call our office at 706-754-3997 to make an appointment for a contraception evaluation today. 

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