A woman becomes pregnant when an egg is released from her ovary and fertilized by a man’s sperm. The fertilized egg attaches to the woman’s uterus and about nine months later, a baby is delivered. Birth control is used to prevent or stop pregnancy and plan the timing of pregnancies.

Most methods use hormonal contraception. Hormonal contraception contains man-made estrogen and progestin hormones. These hormones inhibit the body’s natural hormones in order to prevent pregnancy or to end a pregnancy in the first days after conception.

Side Effects

Please note that every method of hormone based birth control does have different side effects. It can range from a slight headache and weight gain to blood clots and death.

The list of side effects might be listed on the side of the box but are more likely to be listed in a small booklet inside the box. It is vital that you read through this so you are making an informed decision.

Also know that some of these methods do not help prevent STDs. There is also a success rate with each of these options. The only option that is 100% effective in preventing pregnancy is abstinence from sex.

You may not be aware that there are also hormone-free, natural alternatives to family planning. This requires participation by both the man and woman in a relationship, and works best between married couples.

The staff at Options for Pregnancy can find a clinic or center in your area that provides information on birth control, including natural methods mentioned above, and can offer you resources and encouragement if you have chosen abstinence as your method of preventing pregnancy.

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