Birth Control – Avoiding Unwelcome Surprises After Pregnancy

Birth control or contraception is a method of protection against unplanned pregnancy. It helps a couple decide whether or not to have a baby.

A woman can have sex after pregnancy albeit some initial mild discomfort for the first two weeks. However, she stands a high chance of becoming pregnant as her menstrual cycle (that had stopped during her pregnancy period) is likely to resume. Since a new baby demands a lot from the family – especially the mother, becoming pregnant again immediately is not something most parents would welcome. Birth control after pregnancy is a safe and stress-free way of avoiding the anxiety of becoming pregnant again.

Just as there are ways for a woman to look good again after pregnancy, there are ways by which she can protect herself against pregnancy as well. In addition, it is important to note that only a few birth control methods protect an individual against sexually transmitted diseases (STD) or HIV/AIDS.

For any birth control method to be effective, it is important for a couple to understand the way it has to be used and the various do’s and don’ts associated with it. Talking to a qualified professional definitely helps and you get to clear your apprehensions before you chose any specific birth control method.

Lactational Amenorrhea Method (LAM)

LAM is a natural method of birth control during breastfeeding that relies on the postnatal infertility of the woman. Lactation suppresses ovulation hormones. However this is possible only up to the first six months provided the baby is exclusively and frequently breast-fed throughout the day. LAM is no longer effective once menses resume.

Fertility Awareness Method

Also known as natural family planning, this involves studying a woman’s menstrual cycle after pregnancy, to arrive at safe periods for intercourse and practice abstinence during ovulation periods. As a birth control method it is the safest as it does not involve any consumption, implantation or insertion of alien or external drugs or devices. However the success rate of this method depends upon a lot of factors such as self-control and regularity of menses.

Barrier Method

Barrier methods such as condoms, sponges, diaphragms and cervical caps with spermicide, bar the sperm from entering the uterus and do not affect the breast milk.

Hormonal Method

Hormonal methods include oral contraceptives (birth control pills), skin patches, injections and vaginal rings comprising estrogen and progestin. Emergency or ‘morning after’ pills taken within three days of intercourse prevent pregnancy. However these are not advisable for lactating mothers as they affect the quantity and quality of milk produced. Also, hormonal methods involve other side-effects that may or may not agree with some women.

Intrauterine Device (IUD)

An IUD (also known as a loop) is a small device of plastic or metal that is inserted into the uterus by a health professional. IUD is a safe contraception that does not affect lactation. It can be removed when a woman wishes to conceive again.

The Birth Control Patch – 10 Negative Side Effects

When the birth control patch was first introduced, it was designed in the hopes that it would provide women with a convenient method of birth control. As many of us know, the responsibility and discipline of taking a birth control pill each day can be difficult to remember. The birth control patch proposed a solution to this issue by allowing one to place a patch on the skin and forget about the burden of remembering to take the pills.

Unfortunately, it has recently been discovered that the birth control patch has negative side effects that one should be aware of. Here are to common negative side effects from using the birth control patch.

1. Blood clot issues.

Due to the fact that the birth control patch increases the amount of estrogen and progestin, it has been shown that it affects the way the blood forms into blood clots.

2. Risks of stroke or pulmonary embolisms.

Pulmonary embolisms and strokes can result and therefore cause long term disabilities. This has been proven to be a side effect in some cases.

3. Severe headaches.

Although not one of the more dangerous side effects from using the birth control patch, there has been evidence that severe headaches can occur from use of the patch. These headaches often begin suddenly.

4. Vision problems.

Another adverse reaction to the birth control patch is vision problems. It is not an uncommon side effect to have vision problems in one or both eyes.

5. Vomiting and nausea.

There have been many cases where women using the birth control patch suffer from nausea and vomiting as a side effect.

6. Menstrual cramps.

Use of the birth control patch can cause a woman’s periods to become shorter and fewer. Although upon reflection, this can be seen as a benefit, it does show that the patch is causing biological changes in your body’s natural processes.

7. Difficulty Speaking and mental confusion.

Birth control patches have been known to affect one’s speaking abilities. The patch creates a sense of confusion and can make it difficult to articulate words properly or express oneself properly.

8. Upper respiratory infection or cold like symptoms.

There is nothing worse than having difficulty breathing. In addition, the cold like symptoms that accompany this could be a side effect that nobody would want to endure.

9. Skin irritation at the site of patch placement.

Irritation of the skin is definitely a negative side effect that nobody would want to endure. Studies and testing have shown that patches can cause uncomfortable skin irritations.

10. Heart Attacks.

Probably one of the most dangerous of the side effects caused by birth control patches is the risk of a heart attack. In addition, if the woman using the patch is a smoker, then the risk of a heart attack increases as well.