Potential Side EffectsIt may be wise to consider your tolerance for the possible side effects associated with certain brands of birth control. In general, these side effects are not serious and will often go away within a few months of use.
Some common side effects for combination birth control pills include break-through bleeding and nausea.
More About Side EffectsCertain spermicides could cause irritation to the penis or vagina.
Some women may experience skin reactions when using the Ortho Evra Contraceptive Patch.
Irregular bleeding is the most common side effect for women who use Implanon (implants), as well as possible pain at the insertion site.
Research the side effects of each birth control method and determine how comfortable you would be if you experience one of those side effects.
Allergic ResponsesPotential allergies to contraceptives are another consideration. If you or your partner are allergic to latex, you could choose a barrier method made of silicone or polyurethane, like:Diaphragms and cervical caps are not recommended for those with both latex and silicone allergies.
Some people are allergic to chemicals found in spermicides.
Other possible allergies could include: allergic reactions to the hormones found in the pill or other hormonal methods, allergies to the copper in the ParaGard IUD and allergic rashes caused by the NuvaRing.
Medical HistoryConsider whether your medical history conflicts with the use of certain contraceptive methods as various health factors could interfere with some of the available birth control options. For instance:
- Birth control pills are not recommended for women who smoke and are 35 years of age or older.
- Certain health conditions such as migraines, diabetes, and history of stroke or heart problems could make certain contraceptives less safe to use.
Additional Medical Considerations
- Having just delivered a baby or breastfeeding can also affect the type of birth control one should use. Progestin-only pills (the mini pill) could be a good option for women in this situation.
Sexual Transmitted Diseases and IUD'sAnother health factor to consider is whether or not you currently have or potentially could be exposed to a sexually transmitted disease (STD).
If an STD is present at the time an IUD is inserted, the infection can be carried into the uterus. This can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease, which can cause infertility if left untreated. If you are planning on choosing an IUD and are at any risk of catching an STD, it may be wise to use condoms before and after the IUD is inserted.
Depo Provera and Sexual Transmitted InfectionsAdditionally, in a study reported in the Sexually Transmitted Diseases journal, women who used Depo Provera are more than three times as likely to catch chlamydia or gonorrhea over the course of a year than women who use birth control pills or non-hormonal contraceptives.
Sexually Transmitted Diseases and Condom UseIf you currenlty have a STD, remember that a condom is the only method that prevents the spread of certain STDs to your sexual partner.
In fact, condoms help reduce the risk of all of the following STDs: chlamydia, gonorrhea, trichomoniasis, syphilis, HIV, hepatitis, chancroid, and pelvic inflammatory disease. Condoms can also protect against vaginitis caused by trichomoniasis or changes in the pH balance of the vagina that can be triggered by semen.