How to Choose the Right Contraception for Your Lifestyle

Jun 09, 2023
How to Choose the Right Contraception for Your Lifestyle
With so many options available for contraception, how do you know which one is right for you? The answer lies in your lifestyle and your long-term family planning goals, as well as your short-term needs. Explore which options may be right for you.

Contraception, or birth control, means avoiding unwanted pregnancies. Contraception is a great tool to help women decide when and how to shape their families.

Nowadays, you have myriad contraception options, so how do you decide which is best?

At Primrose Women’s Health in Dayton, Ohio, Carrie Cogley, APRN, and the rest of our team know it can be difficult to know which form of contraception is the best fit for your lifestyle. Here’s a little more about your available contraception options and how to know which to choose.

Explaining contraception

Contraception is the use of medicine, devices, or surgery to prevent getting pregnant. Some types of contraception can also prevent you from developing sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). 

Because the various forms of contraception work differently, they range in degree of effectiveness, how long they protect you, and ease of use.

Typically, birth control falls into two categories: hormonal and barrier.

Hormonal contraception

This type of contraception prevents you from getting pregnant by thickening cervical mucus, preventing ovulation, or making an inhospitable environment for fertilization. Some hormonal contraceptives include:

  • Vaginal rings
  • Pills
  • Intrauterine devices (IUDs)
  • Implants
  • Patches
  • Injections

Many of these options — like IUDs — require little day-to-day action on your part.

Barrier contraception

These contraceptives prevent pregnancy by providing a barrier to keep sperm from reaching an egg. Examples of barrier contraception are:

  • Internal and external condoms
  • Sponges
  • Diaphragms
  • Cervical caps

To maximize the effects of barrier contraception, we recommend using spermicide with these methods.

Other contraception outside the hormonal and barrier options include female sterilization or fertility awareness.

Things to consider when choosing contraception

All contraceptives have their pros and cons, and you have several factors to consider when deciding which is best for you. For example, how willing are you to risk an unplanned pregnancy or deal with any side effects?

Some other things you need to think about when narrowing down contraception options include:

  • How often you have sex
  • How many sexual partners you have
  • If you can use the contraception correctly every time
  • If you need protection from SDTs
  • How effective you need the contraception to be

Also, if you tend to have a busy and hectic schedule, this can play into what type of contraception you need.

If you’re looking for something that’s almost guaranteed to prevent pregnancy, sterilization is 99% effective. 

Less permanent options, such as IUDs and arm implants, are equally as effective. These can all also be beneficial if you’re not looking to remember to take a pill every day or use a condom every time you have sex.

Also, hormonal types of birth control have the potential to affect your mood and menstrual cycles. If you want to avoid those kinds of effects, barrier methods or fertility awareness may be the way to go.

Next steps

If you’d like to discuss which forms of contraception best fit your lifestyle, don’t hesitate to give our friendly staff a call to set up an appointment. We’re just a phone call away at 937-345-0009 or by using our online booking tool today.