SAFE BIRTH CONTROL
Why the Discussion?
Opinions regarding birth control and the effects it can have on the human body have been many and varied over the years. As a result, this debate has generated much confusion among many women who are looking to protect their bodies by seeking a safe method of birth control.
Studies have shown that synthetic, prescription hormones can have very undesirable side effects, including increasing a woman’s risk for breast cancer, ovarian cancer and endometrial cancer to mention just a few. Therefore many women, after doing much research, are turning to alternative methods of birth control. For example, non-hormonal IUD’s.
How Does It Work?
A non-hormonal Intrauterine Device (IUD) is a small, flexible, T-shaped, plastic instrument that is wrapped in copper. This device sits inside the uterus (hence the name). The copper prevents pregnancy from occurring by changing the way sperm cells move and preventing them from reaching the egg. Ergo – no pregnancy.
Benefits of Copper IUD’s
So we know that copper IUD’s are an effective method of birth control, but what other benefits are there?
- The are very convenient: Once the copper IUD is in place it can last for up to 12 years. This means you don’t have to worry or even think about birth control for all that time. However, you do have the option to have your IUD removed whenever you want and your fertility will go back to normal immediately.
- They are hormone free: This means they are a good option for people who perhaps cannot use methods with hormones because of medical reasons. It also means you avoid the varied and potentially dangerous side effects associated with synthetic hormones.
- They can be used as emergency contraception: If the copper IUD is inserted within 120 hours (5 days) after unprotected sex, it has been shown to be more than 99.9% effective against pregnancy.
So we have seen this method of birth control has been proven effective, convenient and safe. However, every body is different and some people may experience minor side effects after getting their IUD’s. These may include:
- Some pain when the IUD is placed and cramping/back ache for a few days afterwards.
- Irregular periods.
- Heavy or longer periods.
- Spotting between periods.
- Cramping during your period.
However, these side effects usually go away in about 3-6 months once the body has had time to get used to the ‘foreign object’ in the uterus. Also it should be noted that, whilst IUD’s are an effective and convenient method of birth control, they do not provide protection from sexually transmitted diseases. Therefore, condoms should be used in tandem with the IUD in order to lower the chance of getting or spreading STD’s.
In a sea of confusion and uncertainty regarding birth control, non-hormonal IUD’s have been shown to be a safe, convenient and effective method of preventing pregnancy.