Birth Control

Birth Control Specialist
Birth control is any medicine or device that’s used to reduce the risk of unintended pregnancy. Because there’s a range of effective contraception methods, it’s important to consider your age, medical history, overall health, and sexual activity when choosing the one that’s right for you. The expert providers at Connecticut Women OB/GYN can help you understand your options and find the method that fits your needs. If you want to know more about available birth control options, call or book your appointment online at one of the practice’s three convenient locations in South Windsor, West Hartford, or Enfield, Connecticut.

Birth Control Q & A

What are the different types of birth control?

There are various forms of birth control, each with its own:

  • Potential benefits
  • Drawbacks
  • Rate of effectiveness


The five categories of contraception are:

Hormonal methods

This method prevents ovulation so that your eggs can’t be fertilized. The pill, shot, contraceptive patch, and vaginal ring are common forms of hormonal contraception.

Long-acting reversible contraception (LARC)

These methods include IUDs and implants. An IUD is a T-shaped device that’s placed in your uterus to prevent sperm from reaching an egg. An implant is a tiny, flexible rod that’s placed in your upper arm, where it releases hormones that prevent ovulation.

Barrier methods

This form of contraception blocks sperm from entering your uterus. Barrier options include:

  • Male and female condoms
  • Contraceptive sponges
  • Spermicides
  • Diaphragms
  • Cervical caps


Emergency contraception

A copper IUD and emergency contraceptive pills are the two most effective methods for preventing pregnancy in the hours following unprotected sex or condom breakage.

Sterilization

This is permanent form of birth control may be done nonsurgically, with the placement of an implant that permanently blocks your fallopian tubes. It’s also done surgically, with a tubal ligation that cuts, ties, or seals off your fallopian tubes.

What should I consider when choosing birth control?

Your OB/GYN can help you choose the birth control option that best meets your needs by thoroughly considering the following factors:

  • Your age, overall health, and medical history
  • Your future family planning desires
  • Your sexual frequency and number of partners
  • Your level of comfort with the method
  • Possible side effects


If you have irregular periods, you may benefit most from a hormone-based contraceptive, which prevents pregnancy and helps regulate the menstrual cycle. If you don’t want to start a family anytime soon, an IUD may be your best choice. If you have more than one partner, you may want to use the pill in combination with a male or female condom, as a condom is the only form of birth control that also helps protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

How effective are the various methods of birth control?

Used correctly, IUDs and implants are 99% effective, hormonal birth control shots are 94% effective, and hormonal patches, vaginal rings, and birth control pills are 91% effective. Male and female condoms are only about 80% effective when used alone, but they’re often used along with another form of contraception to provide added protection.  

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