Prescription and Permanent Birth Control Methods
By Dawn Stacey M.Ed, LMHC, About.com Guide
- Birth Control Pills
- Pill Questions
- Brands of Birth Control Pills
- Extended Cycle Pills
- Ortho Evra Patch
- Intrauterine Devices (IUDs)
- Emergency Contraception
- Diaphragms and Cervical Caps
- Depo Provera Shot
- Tubal Ligation
- Contraceptive Injections
- Progestin in Birth Control
- Hormonal Contraception
Birth Control Pills
The pill is the nickname for oral contraceptives. Birth control pills are arguably the most researched drug - ever. The FDA-approval of the pill created the beginning of the rigorous testing drugs must go through today. The pill has allowed women to control their fertility and take charge of their lives. It is safe, effective, and popular… and best of all, most of its success has been due to the women who helped create it, to those who volunteered for its earliest trials to the millions of you who use the pill today!
- All About the Pill
- Combination Birth Control Pills
- Progestin-Only Pills
- Share Your Tip: How Do You Remember When to Take Your Birth Control Pill?
- Weight and Birth Control Pill Effectiveness
- Medications and Inhibitors that Lower the Pill's Effectiveness
- Noncontraceptive Benefits of the Pill
- Share: What Factors Lead to Your Decision to Use the Pill?
- The Differences Between Monophasic, Biphasic and Triphasic Pills
- How to Use Combination Pills
- Choosing the Right Combination Birth Control Pill
- Common Myths About the Pill
- Withdrawal Bleeding
- Tips for Safely Storing the Pill
Even though birth control pills are extremely popular, you may still have some questions about this hormonal method.
- Can I Buy Birth Control Pills Over the Counter?
- Can Birth Control Pills Affect Blood Pressure?
- How Do I Switch to a New Pill?
- Do Drospirenone Pills Increase the Risk of Blood Clots?
- Share: Does Your Doctor Require a Pap Smear/Pelvic Exam for Your Pill Rx?
- Can the Pill Increase Your Risk of VTE (Blood Clots)?
- Will Taking the Pill While Pregnant Harm the Baby?
- What is Ethinyl Estradiol?
- When Should I Take the Pill?
- How Can I Skip My Period Using The Pill?
- How Do I Pick the Right Pill?
Brands of Birth Control Pills
There are many birth control pill brands to choose from: combination pills have estrogen and progestin while brands only contain progestin. Pills come in monophasic, biphasic or triphasic formulas as well as in 28-, 24-, and 21-day packs. Continuous cycle pills can contain 3 months worth of pills or even a whole year! Besides pregnancy protection, some pill brands even offer non-contraceptive health benefits.
Extended Cycle Pills
Extended cycle pills offer more pills per pack (typically a 3 month or one year supply). These pills allow you to completely skip your period or reduce the number of times you get a period. And if you are wondering if extended cycle pills are safe, studies show that using hormonal contraception to stop monthly periods is a safe way to prevent pregnancy. They can provide great convenience and can improve the quality of life for many women.
- What Are Continuous Cycle Pills?
- No More Periods: The Safety of Continuous Birth Control
- Lybrel - the No More Periods Pill
- Real Women Discuss Their Experiences with the Lybrel Birth Control Pill
- The Skinny on Seasonique - Is it Safe?
- Share Your Opinion: Would You Feel Comfortable Skipping Your Period?
- Extended Cycle Pills Quiz
- Lybrel Poll: Share your experience with it!
- Lybrel Poll: Is the FDA Approval of Lybrel Taking Things Too Far?
- Beware: Information About a Common Lybrel and Seasonique Email Scam
- Poll: Would You Be Willing to Try Lybrel?
FDA-approved and marketed in over 35 countries,the NuvaRing is catching attention! This clear, bendable ring (about 2 inches in diameter) is exciting women who want a hassle-free (once-monthly) hormonal method that is just as effective as the pill with less worries. The ring slowly secretes a low dose of estrogen and etonogestrel to protect against pregnancy for one month. Put it in and then go live your life... with no worries!
- What is the NuvaRing?
- Using NuvaRing to Skip Your Period
- What Should I Do if NuvaRing Falls Out?
- What Does the NuvaRing look Like?
- Medications that Lower NuvaRing Effectiveness
- Honeymoon Help with the NuvaRing
- The NuvaRing and Other Hormonal Contraception
- Withdrawal Bleeding
Ortho Evra Patch
Simplify your life by using the once-weekly Ortho Evra Patch. No matter where your week takes you, the patch will have you covered! This thin, beige patch stays put (even in the shower). The sticky side that you attach to your skin slowly releases the hormones norelgestromin and ethinyl estradiol. The patch is just as effective as the pill without the need to remember to take pills everyday. If you can use a band-aid, check out the Ortho Evra Patch!
- The Ortho Evra Contraceptive Patch
- If Patch Falls Off or You Forget to Change It
- FDA Blackbox Warning for the Patch
- How to Skip Your Period Using the Ortho Evra Patch
- Please Vote: Birth Control Patch Polls
- Photos of the Birth Control Patch
- Medications that Lower the Patch's Effectiveness
Intrauterine Devices (IUDs)
The IUD is a small, T-shaped device that is inserted into the uterus. One of the greatest hurdles facing IUD use is that many of you have been lead to believe inaccurate information about them. You may not feel they are safe, are afraid to have an IUD inserted or fear its removal. IUDs, like Mirena and ParaGard are one of the most effective birth control methods available. They last from 5-10 years(with virtually no maintenance) and your fertility can be completely restored upon having your IUD removed. Most women report being highly satisfied with their IUD decision.
- All About the IUD
- The Mirena IUD
- ParaGard Intrauterine Device
- Show and Tell: What Advice Convinced You to Get an IUD?
- What to Expect During an IUD Insertion
- I Can’t Feel My IUD Strings
- Share Your Reason: What Led You to Choose an IUD?
- Can You Use an IUD If You've Never Given Birth?
- How to Manage an IUD Pregnancy
- How an IUD is Removed
- IUDs and Teenagers
- Do I Need to Have My IUD Removed if I Switch Sexual Partners?
- Share Your Story: What Is Your IUD Experience?
- Does the IUD Cause Pelvic Inflammatory Disease or Infertility?
- How to Check Your IUD Strings
Emergency contraception (EC) is an option that reduces the risk of pregnancy, if taken up to 5 days (120 hours) after unprotected sexual intercourse or contraceptive failure. Emergency contraceptives have been available for more than 30 years and are a safe and effective method of contraception. EC is available in three forms: Plan B One-Step (progestin-only branded product), oral contraceptives (either progestin-only birth control pills or combined oral contraceptives), and the ParaGard IUD. The sooner it is obtained, the better the chances of preventing pregnancy.
- Emergency Contraception Options
- Plan B One-Step
- Next Choice (Generic Equivalent to Plan B)
- Original Plan B
- Progestin-Only Emergency Contraception
- Paragard IUD
- Next Choice One Dose (Generic Equivalent to Plan B One-Step)
- How to Buy and Use Plan B One-Step
- How Does Plan B Really Work?
- Who Can Buy Plan B One-Step?
- The Emergency Contraception Debate
- Effectiveness of Emergency Contraception
- Emergency Contraception Quiz
Diaphragms and Cervical Caps
The diaphragm is latex or silicone, dome-shaped cup with a flexible rim. It is inserted securely in the vagina and becomes a barrier which covers the cervix. It is put in place before intercourse and needs to be left in place for 6 to 8 hours after ejaculation. The diaphragm blocks the opening to the uterus while the spermicide hinders the sperm's movement. A cervical cap is also a barrier birth control device, fitted by your doctor and is used to prevent unplanned pregnancies. It is similar to the diaphragm (only smaller). The Femcap and Lea's Shield are two types of cervical caps
- Cervical Caps, Femcap, and Lea's Shield
- Photos of Cervical Caps, Femcap, and Lea's Shield
- How to Prevent Diaphragm Failure
Depo Provera Shot
The depo shot, also known as DMPA, is an injectable form of progestin (one of the same synthetic hormones found in the pill). A woman must receive the shot every 3 months as this method will only provide optimal pregnancy protection for that amount of time. Two versions are available -- the Depo Provera shot and the Depo-subQ Provera injection.
- Depo Provera Shot and the Depo-SubQ Provera Injection
- What to Expect During the First Year of Depo Provera Use
- Share Your Reason: Why Did You Choose the Depo Shot?
- Common Depo Provera Side Effects
- Depo Bleeding – Will It Ever Stop?
- FDA Depo Provera Black Box Warning
- Real Women Discuss Their Experiences with Depo Provera
- Will the Depo Provera Shot Cause Weight Gain?
- Pictures of Depo Provera
- Depo Provera: FDA Approved for the Treatment of Endometriosis-Related Pain
Nexplanon is the newest version of Implanon. Both are considered newer types of progestin-only contraceptive implants. With very little differences between them, they both consist of a thin, flexible plastic implant that is inserted under the skin in the arm. Nexplanon and Implanon both provides up to 3 years of pregnancy protection.
- What Does Implanon Look Like?
- Implanon and Other Prescription Methods
- Effectiveness: Compare Implanon to Other Prescription Contraceptives
A vasectomy is a surgical procedure - traditional vasectomies include a tiny cut in the upper part of the scrotum. No-scalpel vasectomies puncture the scrotum in lieu of an incision. Either approach allows the surgeon to cut, tie off or cauterize the vas deferens. After a vasectomy, men will still make semen, but it will be sperm-free.
- Vasectomy: Male Sterilization
- No Scalpel Vasectomy
- Does Having a Vasectomy Lower Sex Drive?
- How Much Does a Vasectomy Cost?
- Please Share: What is Preventing You From Getting a Vasectomy?
- Permanent Contraception Options
- Effectiveness of Vasectomy vs. Tubal Ligation
Tubal ligation offers surgical and nonsurgical options that permanently sterilize a woman. Both of these approaches work by sealing off or blocking the fallopian tubes - thus preventing an egg from meeting up with a sperm.
- Understanding Tubal Ligation
- Getting Your Tubes Tied: Surgical Tubal Ligation Options
- Essure (Non-Surgical) Permanent Birth Control
- Why Adiana Has Been Discontinued
- Making The Essure Procedure Decision
- Picabo Street Undergoes Essure
- Trista Sutter Seeks Essure
- Share: What Led to Your Decision Get Your Tubes Tied (or is preventing it)?
- Poll: What Are Your Thoughts About Tubal Ligation?
Birth control shots deliver synthetic hormones via an injection and are reversible birth control methods. Pregnancy protection ranges 30 days to14 weeks depending on the shot. Depo Provera and the Depo-subQ 104 Injection are progestin-only shots. Noristerat is another progestin injection but isn't available in the United States. Combined contraceptive injections contain both estrogen and progestin.
- Noristerat Injection
- Monthly Combined Contraceptive Injection
- Depo Provera
- Available Birth Control Shots
Abortion means ending a pregnancy. Given that unintended pregnancy is an issue that affects thousands of people each year, abortion is one of the most common medical procedures performed in the United States. There are several types of abortion procedures, depending upon the stage of pregnancy. Learn about abortion facts, reasons for abortion, and the various abortion methods available.
- What is Abortion?
- Methods of Abortion
- Women's Reasons for Abortion
- Manual Vacuum Aspiration Abortion
- RU486 – The Abortion Pill
- Machine Vacuum Aspiration Procedure
- How To Use RU486
- Checklist: Deciding to Obtain An Abortion
- Please Share: Why Did You Choose Abortion?
- Roe v. Wade
- Future Implications of Roe v. Wade
- Why Perform Abortion Services?
- Abortion Leads to Mental Illness? DEBUNKED...once again
- First Time Abortions Due to Not Using Birth Control
- Crisis Pregnancy Centers
- What Has the Roe v. Wade Decision Meant to Your Life?
Progestin in Birth Control
Progestin is a common hormone found in birth control pills and hormonal contraception. What is it? Learn about the differences between progestins as well as the various progestin types. Information about the estrogenic effects, androgenic effects, and progestational selectivity for each type of progestin is discussed
- Understanding the Types of Progestin in Birth Control
- Different Progestin Types
- Progestin and Your Choice of Birth Control Pills
- Drospirenone and the Risk of Blood Clots
- What Are the Side Effects for Progestin-Only Contraceptives?
- Progestin-Only Birth Control Methods
- Progestin-Only Birth Control Pills
Discussion and definition of hormonal birth control as well as the issues surrounding it. Learn about estrogen and progestin and how these hormones prevent ovulation. Discover how hormonal birth control methods, like the Pill, Depo Provera Shot, Patch, Ring, and Implants work to protect against pregnancy. Details about common side effects and medical risk factors are also included.
- Top Questions About Hormonal Birth Control
- Noncontraceptive Benefits of Hormonal Birth Control
- What is Hormonal Contraception?
- Can Women Use Hormonal Contraception After Age 40?
- How Does The Pill Prevent Ovulation?
- Ways Hormonal Contraception Prevents Pregnancy
- Do Combination Contraceptives Have Side Effects?
- What Are the Side Effects for Progestin-Only Contraceptives?
- How Can a Single Pill Do All That?
- Ethinyl Estradiol (Synthetic Estrogen)
- Answering YOUR Hormone Birth Control FAQs
- What if a Woman Doesn't Like to Take Pills?
- Obesity and Contraception Effectiveness
- How Do Hormones Cause Ovulation?
- Are There Women Who Should Not Use Hormonal Contraceptives?
- Do You Need to Use Other Contraceptives While on the Pill?
- Can Hormonal Birth Control Increase Your Risk of VTE/Blood Clots?