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Contraceptive Counseling: Finding the Right Birth Control for You

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There are many birth control methods available, and it can seem impossible to find the right one for your body. With contraceptive counseling, you can get the guidance you need on choosing the correct birth control method specific to your health. At City of Oaks Midwifery, we offer contraceptive counseling to help you find your perfect fit. 

Contraceptive Counseling Guides You

The first step to successful contraceptive counseling is identifying birth control options that are available. What might be best for another patient or even a friend may not be the best option for you. Take the time to learn about your options before deciding on one. 


The only birth control method that is 100% effective is abstinence. This is also the best way to protect yourself against STDs. If you do not feel ready to have sex, don’t feel pressured. It is a big physical and emotional decision to make for yourself. 

Progestin Arm Implant 

This is a single rod of hormone placed under the skin of the upper arm by a healthcare professional. For three years, it delivers a progestin hormone into your body. This should only be placed by a physician certified in the procedure. According to the Cleveland Clinic, irregular bleeding is the most common side effect that usually improves after six to twelve months. It will need to be removed after three year, but it can be removed anytime before that. 

Intrauterine Device 

An IUD is another option to consider in contraceptive counseling. Intrauterine devices are small, flexible T-shaped devices that are placed in the uterus. 

 The Types of IUDs: 

  • IUD made of copper 

  • IUD made of plastic with low doses of progestin

An IUD is close to 100% effective. After a pelvic examination, the IUD is placed through the cervix. It must be done by a trained healthcare provider.  

Combined Hormonal Contraception 

Contraceptive counseling can mean making decisions among similar products. There are pills, patches and rings that include estrogen as contraception. The difference between the three is that the pill is taken daily, the vaginal ring is used once a month, and the patch is changed weekly. 

Side Effects Of The Pill 

  • Breast tenderness/pain

  • Nausea

  • Headaches

  • Irregular menses

Progestin-only Pills

These pills contain only one hormone, progestin. They work by thickening the cervical mucus, causing the sperm to be unable to reach the egg. This pill is taken every day without placebo pills in place. It is received by getting a prescription from your doctor. 

This is a great alternative to pills that contain estrogen for women who do not want to be on a combined hormonal contraceptive. The side effects are similar to that of the combined hormonal contraception. 

Emergency Contraception 

Emergency contraception often referred to as the “morning-after pill”, is a method of birth control that can be used between three and five days after unprotected sex. This is for use when other highly effective contraceptives are not possible, or available. This can be purchased without a prescription by men and women at any age. 

Barrier Methods 

Barrier methods of contraception keep the sperm from reaching the egg through a blockage of different sorts. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists details the five main types of barrier methods. 

Types of Barrier Methods

  • Spermicide 

  • Condom

  • Sponge

  • Diaphragm 

  • Cervical Cap 


Female Sterilization: Tubal Ligation

Tubal ligation is often referred to as “tie the tubes”. While this is a contraceptive measure, it is a surgical procedure that results in permanent sterility. This procedure is done under anesthesia at a hospital or outpatient surgical clinic. 

Male Sterilization: Vasectomy   

A vasectomy is another option to discuss at contraceptive counseling for the men in your life. This is another permanent sterilization procedure done on men. This is typically done at a doctor’s office. It is a surgical procedure that entails cutting and sealing the tubes in the male reproductive system that are responsible for carrying sperm. It is done while the patient is awake, but there is no pain with the use of local anesthesia. 

While these are not all of the contraceptive methods you can find, they are a few of the most common choices. Contraceptive Counseling is a service that City of Oaks Midwifery can offer to you. Interested in finding out more about these birth control methods? Find out more on our website or call us at (919) 646-6252. 


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