No. One size does not fit all when it comes to birth control. Research shows that the more contraceptive options available, the greater prevalence of birth control use in general and the lower the rate of unplanned pregnancies.

Why?

Because when people have options, they can find a birth control method that works best for them. They are therefore more likely to use it, and use it correctly.

There are a number of factors to consider when choosing a birth control method and no one family planning option works for everyone. In fact, most people will need different birth control options at different stages of their lives. A woman who chooses a hormonal birth control option at one point may want to use a natural birth control option at another. She may even want sterilization when she feels that her family is complete.

Some of the issues to be considered when choosing a birth control option include:

  • Effectiveness
  • Side-effects
  • Cost
  • Availability
  • Short term future family plans
  • Long term future family plans
  • Level of involvement required
  • Difficulty of use
  • Protection against sexually transmitted diseases
  • Partner’s willingness to use
  • Pre-existing health issues

No wonder we need options!

It’s important for anyone who is considering their birth control options to weigh the different issues and decide what matters most to him or her. Whether it’s concern about side-effects, effectiveness, low cost, potential affects on future fertility, preventing STDs, or any number of other issues, it is important to consider the pros and cons of each contraceptive option available and make the right choice for you.

We have already posted about the issue of birth control effectiveness and will take a closer look at some of the other factors involved in deciding on the right birth contraceptive option in future posts.

Any other issues that have factored into your decision? Let us know.




Posted in: Birth Control Cost, Birth Control Effectiveness, Birth Control Options, Birth Control Side Effects, Natural Birth Control

Tags: birth control options, contraception, family planning options, hormonal birth control, side effects of birth control, the pill

3 comments for "One Size Fits All in Birth Control?"

lizgarcia1972 says:

One other issue that I deal with a lot when I see patients is an option that is "culturally acceptable". I've worked with communities where women won't use certain methods because its against their religion or just distrusted, or with teenagers who would be too embarrassed if their parents found their birth control.

Cycle Technologies says:

Liz, thanks for adding this. That is a great point about whether or not a method is "culturally appropriate" being an issue. Interestingly, when women talk to us about their reasons for choosing CycleBeads, they never describe it as a choice made for "cultural" reasons. They are more likely to say that they are concerned about side effects, but certainly culture can influence your view on all of these issues.

jojo says:

The NY Times wrote an article today about the fact that the Pill doesn't fit into everyone's lifestyle. Unfortunately when they talk about options, they don't talk about natural methods at all (surprise!). They only talk about IUD's being more cost effective than the Pill and good for those who are forgetful. Too bad they don't say anything about how the pesky side effects of hormonal birth control don't always fit into a woman's lifestyle either – headaches, nausea, strokes, death!

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/21/health/21patient.html?_r=1

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