Tips for Finding the Right Birth Control for Your Lifestyle

Feb 28, 2024 | Blog

When used properly, birth control is the most effective way to prevent pregnancy outside of abstinence. But compared to decades ago, when the contraceptive pill was the only prescription option available, there are now lots of methods to consider. And if you’ve searched “best birth control for me” online, you might even discover types you didn’t know existed! 

Finding the right way to guard yourself against an unwanted pregnancy can be overwhelming, but we’re here to walk you through the options.

What’s the Best Birth Control for Me?

Know Your Options

The first step of finding the best birth control is knowing all of your options. Here’s a crash course on each type.

  • Birth control pills: So popular that it’s often referred to just as “the pill,” this is a hormonal form of birth control, meaning it uses hormones to prevent pregnancy. Pills come in various pack types: the conventional prescription will require you to take 21 active pills and 7 inactive pills every month (you’ll get your period during the inactive phase), whereas continuous dosing or extended cycle pills contain more active pills to delay your periods.
  • Vaginal ring: Another hormonal birth control method, the NuvaRing alters ovulation similar to the pill. You’ll insert the flexible, hormone-infused ring into your vagina, leave it in for three weeks, give your vagina a 7-day break, and then replace it for the next cycle.
  • Skin patch: Like the ring and the pill, the skin patch is a method that releases hormones — this time through your skin — to prevent ovulation. It’s worn like a bandage and will need to be replaced weekly.
  • Contraceptive injections: These birth control shots (such as Depo-Provera®) contain hormones to prevent pregnancy.  Given at three-month intervals, they are administered in your arm or buttocks.
  • IUD: Unlike the options above, an intrauterine device (IUD) is considered a long-acting birth control because it can last three to 10 years, depending on the type. This small, flexible device is placed in your uterus through your vagina by your provider.
  • Implant: Another long-acting method, an implant can be inserted under the skin in your upper arm to release hormones that prevent pregnancy.

Though all the methods above will require a visit to our office, if you need immediate protection, condoms can be purchased from most stores. They’re 85% effective when put on before intercourse, and have the added benefit of STI protection.

Consider Your Goals & Lifestyle

Now, it’s time to consider which option might be the best fit for you. While birth control pills don’t require any injections or physical inserts, you’ll need to remember to take them daily. The patch avoids these inconveniences, but may not be right if you have sensitive skin. IUDs can be a low-maintenance alternative, especially if you don’t plan to get pregnant for the next several years — and they come in hormonal and nonhormonal versions, if that’s a concern for you.

But lifestyle considerations aren’t the only things that should influence your decision. If your biggest concern is pregnancy prevention, an implant is your best option. It has a 99.95% effectiveness rate, followed closely by an IUD. 

If you think you might want to try for a pregnancy in the coming years, however, this too could affect your choice. While you can get pregnant shortly after stopping most methods, note that it can take 10 to 18 months to resume normal ovulation after halting birth control injections. 

Finally, think about other goals you may have, like alleviating period symptoms. In this case, birth control shots may be your best choice, as up to 75% of women report having no periods after a year of them.

Schedule A Birth Control Consultation Today

Whether you’d like to know more about any of the birth control options above, or you just want a professional to lend an ear as you talk through the dizzying options, our team is happy to help you reach a decision. Allow us to help you manage all aspects of your gynecological care by calling 770-487-9604 for an appointment.

Latest Posts

A Comprehensive Guide to Gynecologic Cancers

A Comprehensive Guide to Gynecologic Cancers

The possibility of cancer is never a welcome thought, and oftentimes we do our best to shun it from our minds completely. But giving it at least some of our attention is the very thing that winds up saving lives. With a little background knowledge, you can be an...

​​Everything You Need to Know About Hysterectomies

​​Everything You Need to Know About Hysterectomies

Though it may sound scary if you need one, a hysterectomy is the second-most common procedure performed in the U.S. for women, trailing only behind C-sections. There are many reasons why your doctor might recommend this procedure, and having some background knowledge...