The wide variety of birth control methods available these days can make it hard to pick which one is right for you. Dr. Mohannad Alshalabi is a well-respected OB/GYN specialist, located at Shelby Women Health in Greenbelt, Maryland, who can help you choose one that prevents pregnancy but also fits your lifestyle and overall physical health. He’s easy to talk to and takes the time to listen to your personal goals and ideals. Contact the office today to schedule an appointment.
Temporary birth control methods that Dr. Alshalabi prescribes include:
Oral contraceptives use hormones to stop ovulation, the part of your menstrual cycle that releases mature eggs from the ovaries that are ready for fertilization. Some contraceptives contain a combination of estrogen and progestin while others are progestin-only pills. Some forms of oral contraceptives cause you to have a monthly period while extended cycle pills decrease the frequency of your periods from monthly to every three months, six months, or fewer.
Diaphragms are specially fitted devices created to prevent sperm from reaching an egg by covering the cervix, the opening to the uterus. IUDs thicken the mucus in the cervix and prevent sperm from reaching the uterus. They also kill sperm and prevent the uterine lining from growing thick enough to sustain an embryo.
The NuvaRing releases a combination of estrogen and progestin to prevent ovulation. It’s inserted vaginally and remains in place for three weeks, when you remove it so you can have a normal period. The skin patch also uses combination hormones delivered via a patch that’s removed and replaced weekly.
Permanent birth control measures take away the inconvenience of remembering a daily medication or other issues associated with temporary birth control, such as returning to the doctor every few months for an injection. However, it’s imperative that you’re sure about not having children because you will not be able to become pregnant afterward.
Permanent birth control methods include:
Tubal ligation: During a surgical tubal ligation, the fallopian tubes are cut or tied to prevent eggs from traveling into the uterus for fertilization. This procedure can be performed right after you’ve delivered your last child or at any time you decide you do not want any or more children.
Essure: This is a nonsurgical “tubal ligation” that blocks the fallopian tubes. During this procedure, soft, flexible inserts are placed in each fallopian tube via the vagina, through the uterus, and into the fallopian tubes, eliminating the need for surgery. The insert remains in place and causes your body to build a tissue barrier around this “foreign body.” The tissue barrier blocks your fallopian tubes within about three months and prevents mature eggs from being fertilized.