Throughout the United States, approximately 72.2 million women between the ages of 15 and 49 are using some form of birth control. If you are you thinking about joining their ranks but hesitant or unsure which type of birth control to use, read this article.
Outlined below are some of the greatest benefits of birth control. You’ll also find some tips on how to choose the right birth control.
Benefits of Birth Control
Here are some of the most noteworthy health benefits of birth control that you can experience when you find the right method:
Protection from Unplanned Pregnancy
The first, and perhaps the most obvious, the benefit of birth control is the fact that it can help you to avoid an unplanned pregnancy. If you do not want to have children right now, it’s imperative that you select some type of birth control and use it in the correct way. Don’t leave it up to your partner to handle this. It’s up to you to take control of your reproductive health and prevent a pregnancy.
Menstrual Cycle Regulation
In addition to preventing pregnancy, birth control can also help to regulate your menstrual cycle. Many women who struggle with irregular periods find birth control to be very helpful. When they find the right birth control for periods and use it on a consistent basis, it’s easier for them to predict their cycles. They can avoid dramatic hormone fluctuations throughout the month, too.
Certain birth control methods can be good for those who deal with severe acne, too. Women who experience extreme hormonal breakouts will often see their skin clear up when they’re able to find the best birth control for acne (birth control pills and other methods that balance hormones tend to be most effective for this issue). This can help them to feel more confident and improve their self-esteem.
Reduced Menstrual Pain
Birth control not only helps to regulate the menstrual cycle, but it can help to mitigate menstrual pain, too. For women who deal with severe cramps during their periods, birth control can make a huge difference. It can help them to feel well throughout their cycle and avoid having to miss work, school, or other important events because their cramps are so painful.
Reduced Menstrual Migraines
Some women deal with migraines at certain points during their menstrual cycles. In these cases, birth control can be a lifesaver. It allows women to avoid debilitating pain and keep up with the demands of everyday life without being sidelined by a crippling migraine.
Reduced Cancer Risk
Birth control can also help to reduce a woman’s risk of developing uterine cancer. In fact, some research shows that women who use birth control pills, in particular, are 50 percent less likely to develop uterine cancer than those who don’t. These effects last for up to 20 years after a woman stops taking birth control pills, too.
How to Choose the Right Birth Control
There are many benefits that come with using birth control. To experience these benefits, though, you need to find the best type of birth control method for your needs. Below are some important factors to keep in mind when choosing the right birth control:
Type of Birth Control
There are many different types of birth control that women might want to consider using. The following are some of the most popular options:
- Birth control pills: These are taken daily and provide women with a controlled dose of hormones to prevent ovulation, which in turns prevents them from getting pregnant
- Intrauterine device (or IUD): This is inserted into the uterus to prevent pregnancy with or without hormones
- Implant: This is a device that’s inserted in the arm and releases hormones to prevent ovulation and pregnancy
- Injections: Birth control injections must be administered on a regular basis; they provide a dose of hormones that prevent ovulation and pregnancy
You can also look into barrier options like condoms, cervical caps, and sponges. These must be used whenever you have sex to prevent pregnancy.
When choosing a type of birth control, it’s important to think about its effectiveness. Condoms, for example, around 85 percent effective. Birth control pills, by contrast, are about 91 percent effective. Some of the most effective options to consider are injections (94 percent effective), IUDs, and implants. Both IUDs and implants are 99 percent effective, and there’s very little room for error, which is not the case with other methods like pills or condoms.
It’s important to note that not all birth control methods protect you against Sexually Transmitted Diseases (or STDs). In fact, condoms are the only option that will shield you from STDs. If you’re worried about contracting this type of disease, you can use a condom alongside another birth control method. That way, you’re less likely to develop an STD and you’re protected from an unplanned pregnancy.
Required Lifestyle Shifts
Think about how your preferred method of birth control fits into your lifestyle, too. Is it practical for you to always carry condoms with you so that you always have access to birth control? Does it make more sense for you to choose more of a “set it and forget it” method like an implant or injection so that you’re always protected from an unplanned pregnancy? There’s no right answer here. It’s up to you, your lifestyle, and your preferences.
Now that you have a better understanding of the benefits of birth control, as well as the different options available, are you ready to select one that meets your needs? Keep the tips listed above in mind and you’ll have a much easier time finding a birth control method that works for you.