Birth Control Methods (cont.)
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
Jerry R. Balentine, DO, FACEP
Dr. Balentine received his undergraduate degree from McDaniel College in Westminster, Maryland. He attended medical school at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine graduating in1983. He completed his internship at St. Joseph's Hospital in Philadelphia and his Emergency Medicine residency at Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center in the Bronx, where he served as chief resident.
In this Article
- Birth control facts
- How does birth control work?
- How long does it take for birth control to begin working?
- Can you get pregnant on birth control?
- What are the different types of birth control available?
- 1. What are hormonal birth control options (including oral contraceptives pills)?
- 2. What are barrier methods of birth control (including condoms)?
- 3. What about surgical sterilization (tubal ligation or vasectomy) for birth control?
- 4. What are natural birth control options?
- 5. What is emergency contraception?
- 6. What are IUDs (intrauterine devices)?
- Find a local Obstetrician-Gynecologist in your town
1. What are hormonal birth control options (including oral contraceptives pills)?
Hormonal options of birth control involve the use of hormones to prevent ovulation in a woman. Although oral contraceptive pills are the most widely used hormonal method, other options are available including the vaginal ring, hormone patches applied to the skin, and injections of progestin.
Common side effects of birth control pills
- weight gain,
- skin discoloration,
- bleeding between periods or spotting,
- mood swings,
- change in menstrual flow, and
- breasts swelling or tenderness.
Cigarette smoking increases the risk of these complications. This risk is greatest in women over 35 who are heavy smokers (>15 cigarettes/day). Your health-care professional l usually will recommend that you quit smoking if you use birth control pills.
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