Dr. Mayhew has helped numerous women make that decision. She discusses the wide array of options, providing advice based on each woman’s lifestyle, personal preference, age, health, desire to get pregnant in the near or distant future, and the likelihood that she will remember to take a pill at the same time every day. Among the methods she often recommends are the IUD and implants, both of which are known for safety and effectiveness.
Dr. Mayhew is an advocate of the IUD (intrauterine device), which is a tiny T-shaped device that is implanted inside the uterus during a simple office procedure. IUDs provide birth control by preventing eggs from adhering to the walls of the uterus and have fewer side effects than the birth control pill. Once an IUD is implanted, it can remain in place from 3 to 10 years, depending on the type used. There are two types of IUDs:
An implant is a plastic, match-size stick device that’s implanted under the skin on the inside of the upper arm by Dr. Mayhew in a simple office visit. The device continuously releases progestin, which prevents sperm from reaching an egg. Implants can last for up to 5 years and eliminate the risk of a woman forgetting to take pills.
The pill remains the most popular form of birth control. Many women like that it doesn’t require an interruption to foreplay and also reduces menstrual bleeding and cramping, and may prevent acne, anemia, bone thinning, and certain cancers. Among the drawbacks, some women experience breast tenderness, nausea, and/or spotting, and they must remember to take the pill on a daily basis.
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