Sexual Health

Know Your Birth Control Options

Women who use birth control know there are many options available, including the pill, condoms, intrauterine devices and more. How do you know which one to use?
Birth control pills and condoms are the most commonly used birth control methods in the United States. But Mayo Clinic gynecologist Megan Wasson, M.D., said not all birth control pills are the same.
“The most conventional birth control pills have a combination of estrogen and progesterone, and that works to not only suppress ovulation, but also keep the lining of the uterus very thin,” she said. “There are also progesterone-only birth control pills, and those don’t increase blood pressure, they don’t increase risk for blood clots, and those are very helpful for patients who have other medical conditions.”
Other birth control options include reversible contraceptives such as injections, IUDs, implants, and sterilization. Dr. Wasson said women “… really need to decide when and if they ever want to have children again.”
Will we see a male contraceptive soon?
There is still ongoing research, Dr. Wasson said, but unfortunately not any time in the near future.

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