Ultimate Guide for Long Term Protection from Pregnancy

There are several ways to stop pregnancy. There are also several contraceptive devices in India that you can select as a long term option to avoid pregnancy. Let us see what they are:

Barrier Method

This method physically blocks the movement of sperms. Thus, sperms don’t reach the egg. As a result, the barrier method completely prevents fertilisation. Some types of barrier methods are:

  • Male Condoms

A male condom is the most convenient method and widely used in the market. Men wear condoms on their penis during sex. A condom is the most effective method to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. Just remember to select the right size and wear it correctly. Male condoms are easily available at all chemists and supermarkets.

  • Female Condoms

They are the female equivalents of male condoms. A female condom is inserted into the vagina. It is as effective as its male counterpart. You can use them instead of a male condom, but you should never use both of them together. Nowadays, they are easily available at various chemists. You can also buy them online if you cannot find one at the chemist.

  • Cervical Cap

A cervical cap is a silicone cup that is inserted into the vagina in order to cap the cervix. This prevents the sperms from reaching the egg. Research suggests that the effectiveness of the cervical cap is anywhere between 70% to 80%. Unfortunately, it doesn’t prevent sexually transmitted infections.

  • Diaphragm

A diaphragm is also a barrier method, wherein, it is inserted into the vagina in order to stop ovulation. But, spermicide should be applied to the diaphragm before every use. Spermicide increases the effectiveness by about 91%, hence, must be applied a couple of hours before having sex and should be removed only 24 hours post sex.

Hormonal Method

This method prevents pregnancy by halting ovulation. However, hormonal contraception doesn’t offer any protection against STIs. Also, they are prescription medicines and need a doctor’s approval to buy them. Some of the hormonal methods are:

  • Contraceptive Pills

Also called birth control pills, they are the most widely accepted hormonal method to prevent pregnancy. They prove to be more than 99% effective when administered as prescribed. These pills are of two types:

1. A combined pill which has progestin and estrogen and is taken daily

2. A mini-pill that contains only progestin and should be taken daily

A combined pill medicine pack also contains some pills that may be free of these hormones to facilitate monthly periods in women. Note that pills may result in irregular periods.

  • Patches

Patches are another effective method that helps prevent pregnancy by 99% if used correctly. They can also be applied on the stomach, back, buttocks or arms. Each patch has to be used for a minimum of 3 weeks and can be removed for one week to enable mensuration.

  • Injection

This contraceptive injection should be administered every three months. When taken correctly, it effectively prevents pregnancies by about 90%. However, it takes a lot of time for the fertility to revert to normal. Sometimes, it may take 10 months or longer too.

  • IUDs

IUD is a small device that gets placed in the uterus through the vagina. There are two types: copper-based and hormonal. The hormonal IUDs thicken the mucus of the cervix this prevents the sperms from entering into the uterus. These last for 5 years. Copper IUDs are hormones free. They are about 99% effective at stopping pregnancy. They prevent pregnancy by destroying the sperm that tries to enter into the uterus.

There are several adverse side effects of IUDs like increased menstrual cramps, spotting in between periods and irregular periods. LNG IUD or Levonorgestrel IUD is also commonly used among women to avoid pregnancy.

  • Implants

An implant is a rod, the size of a matchstick, inserted in the arms as prevention against pregnancy. It releases hormone progestin, which stops ovulation. Remember to replace it once in 3 years.