Family planning plays an essential role in a modern woman’s life. It is necessary to settle on the first practical and convenient contraceptive. Hormonal contraceptives protect 98 per cent unwanted pregnancies, and they are convenient to use. But they all influence women’s hormone levels. It can cause breakthrough bleeding between periods. Also, they are not recommended for women with clotting tendencies, coronary heart disease, stroke, unevaluated breast lumps, vaginal bleeding, or breast cancer.
Male and female condoms
Condoms are one of the foremost popular methods of contraception. Following are some advantages of using a condom:
- The condom can be bought without any prescription
- The condom is easy to use.
- It does not physically alter the fertility of the person using them. They are one-time “use and throw” contraception method.
- Protection against STIs
An intrauterine contraceptive device (IUCD) is made from plastic and copper, which is put inside the womb. Copper in the device makes it difficult for sperm to fertilise an egg, makes the mucus at the neck of the womb and the womb lining itself hostile to sperm and eggs. Modern IUCDs are very effective. Only 1-2 of each 100 women using the IUCD as contraception will become pregnant over five years of use. Most copper IUCDs work well for a minimum of five years, and lots of types now work for ten years.
Following are some advantages of Copper IUCD 380A
- Offers long term protection against pregnancy and can be reversed too
- Its effect can be seen immediately after it is inserted.
- Does not require daily checking during or before an intercourse
- It is a cost-effective and one-time procedure.
- The IUCD does not interfere with sex. It is not a hormonal method; thus will not affect your mood or weight.
- Can be used by lactating women
- Does not interact with any medicines
- Prompt return of fertility after removal.
Potential Health Risks
Hole in the womb during insertion is a rare complication which occurs in 0.5 to 1.5 per 1000 insertions. It may also come out on its own in about 2-8 %. The chances of it coming out are more in the first three months after insertion. Further, infection following IUCD insertion is less than 1%.
Nonsteroidal, Non- hormonal Oral Contraceptive Pill
In India, ormeloxifene has been available as contraception since the first 1990s, and it’s currently marketed there under the brand name Saheli. Now available in India as Chhaya. Centchroman (Ormeloxifene) is a selective estrogen receptor modulator (SERM). In some tissues/organs of the body, it has weak oestrogenic action (e.g., bones) while in others it has strong anti-estrogenic effect (e.g., uterus, breasts, etc.).
- It is taken once a week.
- It does not have any side effects like there are with hormonal pills.
- It is considered safe for breastfeeding women too.
- Women of all ages can take it.
It is safer in women as compared to hormonal pills who had a stroke, blood clot in legs or lungs, heart attack, history of breast cancer if taking medication for seizure or for tuberculosis or other illness.
- It causes delayed periods in a few women. But this happens in around 8% of users and typically within the first three months. The periods tend to calm down to a rhythm once the body gets won't to the drug.
- Periods can get scanty over time in some women.
With inputs from Dr Neema Sharma, Director- Obstetrics and Gynecology at Fortis Flt. Lt. Rajan Dhall Hospital
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