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Top contraceptives for women

In this day and age, women have lots of choices when it comes to lifestyle from pursuing a career to having children. Putting off child bearing at a later stage or to halt it altogether is made easy because there are several contraceptives available for women who make this decision alone or jointly with a partner. Let us review some of the top methods of contraception.

Choices and side effects

There are many types of contraceptives for women and each method differs in efficacy and accuracy in preventing conception. Below are popular methods:

Non-permanent

  • Injections

Injections are renewed every 2 months (8 weeks) or every 12 weeks. Weight gain, mood swings, headaches, occasional bleeding and breast tenderness may be experienced.

  • Implants

Implants usually last up to 3 years and unlike injections, you don’t have to worry about renewing them every few weeks. A side effect to implants is that menstrual periods stop so you might want to consider this option seriously should you decide to have children later on.

  • IUS (intrauterine system) and IUD (intrauterine device) or coil

These methods involve the insertion of a coil in the genital area to prevent fertilisation from taking place. They last for 5 years and usually have little to no discomfort amongst users. Reported side effects include breast tenderness, acne, mood swings and infections after insertion.

  • Patch

Patches are used and renewed weekly for 3 weeks in a month. Women who opt for this type of contraceptive may experience nausea, headache, dizziness, breast tenderness and sometimes, blood clots.

  • Vaginal ring

Women can also opt to use vaginal rings which are renewed monthly. Mood swings, vaginal discharge, breast tenderness and nausea are some possible side effects.

  • Pill

Taking contraceptive pills can be effective for as long as they are taken religiously or on schedule. You can get a combined pill which is taken everyday for 3 weeks in a month or a progesterone only pill which is taken daily. With this type of contraceptive, you might experience skin reactions, weight gain/loss and breast tenderness.

  • Condom

Condoms for both men and women exist and can be up to 98% effective. In addition, it prevents the spread of sexually transmitted diseases.

  • Diaphragm or cap with spermicide

You can also choose to use a diaphragm or cap with spermicide every time you have sex. Bladder infection is one possible side effect associated with diaphragm use.

Permanent

  • Sterilisation

For women who no longer desire to conceive, female sterilisation is an option while their partners can also opt for male sterilisation or vasectomy.

Birth control decision

Contraceptives for women vary and in the end, it is up to you to choose the type that suits you best. Consult with your gynaecologist or family doctor to familiarise yourself with these methods. Your medical practitioner might suggest the best contraceptives methods based on your lifestyle, preference, and health as well as possible side effects.

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