Your birth control method failed, and you’re sitting there pondering those two pink lines on your pregnancy test – what went wrong? You could have sworn that you did exactly what you heard would work. No one wants to be fooled when you’re trying not to get pregnant, and the best way to prevent pregnancy (besides not having sex) is to use a reliable form of birth control.
So what methods are trustworthy, and which ones could leave you playing pregnancy roulette? Despite what you may have heard from your friends or read on the internet (somewhere, of course, that wasn’t here) some of those “fail-proof” contraception methods you’ve been relying on just don’t cut it.
Common Conception Myths
- Withdrawal or “pull-out method” – A male avoids ejaculating into the vagina by pulling his penis out beforehand, so no sperm can reach the egg. False! Sperm is actually released inthe fluid that comes out before ejaculation– before the grand finale. This sperm is the same as what is released during his orgasm, and it still has the ability to fertilize a female egg.
- Sex on your period – The idea is that you can have sex on your period, and pregnancy can’t take place. False! Sperm are hardy and can live inside of the vagina for 3-5 days and thanks to the wonders of nature, you can be on your period and still have a living, unfertilized egg in your uterus that hasn’t been expelled with your period. It can be fertilized, and you can get pregnant.
- Absent orgasm – A female doesn’t have an orgasm during sex, so she can’t get pregnant. Perhaps one of the most absurd myths out there, you can get pregnant whether you do or don’t have an orgasm – sperm again are hardy and know their duty (to fertilize). They swim while penetrating anything round, because in actuality, their lives depend on getting to that egg.
- Breastfeeding – A female can’t get pregnant during breastfeeding especially with the absence of a period. Many women rely on this method and find themselves expecting another baby much sooner than they intended. While the hormones necessary for making milk can suppress ovlulation, it’s not meant to be used as a fool-proof prevention method. Ovulation can begin at any time and you may never know–until. An egg may be released anywhere from up to two weeks before you start your period!
- Douching – A female douches after sex, and flushes all of the sperm outside of her vagina. While sperm may exit the vagina, some may still remain performing their sole duty of trying to conceive.
Reliable birth control methods
You have options! There are reliable forms of birth control includingfemale and male condoms, diaphragms along with spermicides, birth control pills, birth control patches, birth control shots, and intra-uterine devices (IUD’s).
Most contraceptives fall into two categories: hormonal (meaning they influence your body’s hormones to prevent pregnancy) and barrier, which stop sperm from reaching their destination by blocking their path. With so many methods, knowing which to choose may be intimidating.
For more information on birth control options, make an appointment today with Dr. Hessel. She will be able to answer all of your questions and help you choose which option is best for you.