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Birth Control Health Center

Medical Reference Related to Birth Control

  1. Topic Overview

    In some women,the estrogen in combination hormonal birth control methods increases the risk of a blood clot in a leg ( deep vein thrombosis,or DVT ) or a blood clot in a lung ( pulmonary embolism,or PE ). A blood clot in a leg vein can travel through the circulation system and cause pulmonary embolism. The risk for DVT or PE is overall very low with hormonal contraceptives. In the past,...

  2. Topic Overview

    The skin (transdermal) patch is a highly effective method of birth control when it is used exactly as directed. The patch failure rate is the same as that of birth control pills. Talk to your doctor about what day to start using the patch. It is usually recommended that the first patch be placed on the first day of your next menstrual period. If the patch is started on any other day,use a ...

  3. Topic Overview

    Some medicines can interfere with how birth control pills work. For example,you may not be protected from pregnancy while you are taking other medicines that affect liver metabolism. The vaginal ring and skin patch contain combination hormones and may also interact with some medicines. The progestin-only pills,implant (Implanon),and shot (Depo-Provera) also contain hormones that may ...

  4. Topic Overview

    Several myths about when a woman can or cannot become pregnant persist,particularly among younger people. Myths and truths about becoming pregnant Myth Truth You can't get pregnant the first time you have vaginal intercourse. Getting pregnant has nothing to do with how many times you have sex. If you are near the time of ovulation when you have sexual intercourse,you can get pregnant. You ...

  5. Birth Control Pills, Patch, or Ring

    Drug details for Combination hormonal birth control methods (pills, patch, or ring).

  6. Barrier Methods of Birth Control

    Barrier methods of birth control block sperm from entering the uterus. Using a spermicide with a barrier method gives you the best possible barrier method protection. In fact, without a spermicide, a diaphragm, cervical cap, or Lea's Shield is not effective. The spermicide kills most of the sperm that enter the vagina. The barrier method then blocks any remaining sperm from passing through the ...

  7. Topic Overview

    Birth control methods Method How it prevents pregnancy Hormonal Prevents ovulation Thickens mucus at the cervix so sperm cannot pass through Changes the environment of the uterus and fallopian tubes to prevent fertilization and to prevent implantation if fertilization occurs Intrauterine device (IUD) The progestin released by the hormonal IUD prevents fertilization by making the mucus in the ...

  8. Topic Overview

    The cervical cap is a barrier method of birth control. A cervical cap,which is made of rubber,fits tightly over the opening to the uterus (the cervix). It is used with a spermicide. You can insert the cap ahead of time or just before sex. To work best,the cap should be left in place for 6 hours after sex. Do not leave it in for more than 48 hours total. If you have sex more than one time ...

  9. Progestin-Only Hormonal Methods (Mini-Pills, Implants, and Shots)

    Drug details for Progestin-only hormonal methods (mini-pills, shots).

  10. Topic Overview

    A spermicide is a substance that kills sperm. Spermicides are available as jelly,foam,cream,suppositories,and film. The active ingredient of most spermicides is a chemical called nonoxynol-9. Most spermicides come with an applicator. The applicator is filled with spermicide and inserted into the vagina right before intercourse. When using a jelly,foam,or cream,you can then have sex ...

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