What to Consider When Selecting the Right Birth Control for You

You may wonder which birth control is considered the best. But the truth is, no birth control method is best for everyone. A birth control that’s right for your best friend may not serve you as well.

Here at Associates in Women’s Health in Cincinnati, our team of providers works with each of our patients on an individual basis to select the birth control strategy that best meets their personal needs. We take the following considerations into account when designing a customized birth control approach for each woman.

Consideration #1: Effectiveness

Birth control methods have a varying range of ability to prevent pregnancy effectively. To compare effectiveness levels of various birth control methods, the US Department of Health and Human Services (USHHS) looks at the number of pregnancies per 100 women during their first year of use.

According to USHHS data, implantable birth control rods and IUDs offer the greatest level of effectiveness, with a score of fewer than one pregnancy per 100 women during the first year of use. In comparison, birth control pills have an effectiveness score of nine pregnancies, diaphragms have a score of 12, the male condom has a score of 18, and the female condom has a score of 21.

If preventing pregnancy is important to you, you may want to choose a more effective birth control method.

Consideration #2: Lifestyle

Condoms are less effective at preventing pregnancy than other types of birth control. However, using latex condoms every time you have sex is an effective way to prevent the transmission of sexually transmitted infections (STI). No other birth control methods protect you from STIs.

If you are at risk of getting or spreading an STI, condoms may be the best choice for you. To lower your chances of getting pregnant, make sure you know how to use condoms properly. You may also opt to combine condoms with a more effective pregnancy prevention method, such as an implantable rod or IUD.

Consideration #3: Your medication adherence history

Think back to the last time your doctor prescribed you a medication. Did you take it as recommended, or did you often forget about it?

Birth control pills are most effective when you take them every day. And condoms only work if you remember to have one with you when you need it.

If you aren’t great at remembering things like pills or condoms, you may do better with a set-it-and-forget-it birth control method such as an implantable rod or an IUD. 

Consideration #4: Your health

Birth control methods vary in their potential side effects and in their safety for women with certain health conditions or health risks. 

For example, some methods, such as the pill and the implantable rod, can cause headaches in some women. They may not be right for you if you get migraines. And some methods may not be recommended for smokers or people with conditions such as high blood pressure or an elevated risk of stroke.

When you meet with one of our providers to discuss your birth control needs, we make sure that we fully understand your health history and risk factors to reduce the likelihood of side effects or complications.

Which birth control is best for you?

Make sure you’re using a birth control method that provides the effectiveness, safety, and convenience that best suits your individual needs. Meet with a provider at Associates in Women’s Health to ensure optimal protection. Make an appointment by calling our office at 513-794-1500 or requesting an appointment today.

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