There are a number of contraceptives available but which method of birth control suits you depends on your sexual life, preferences and your lifestyle as a whole. Professional medical help should be sought in order to understand what method of contraception sis ideal for you.
Here is a list of 4 types of contraceptives for birth control:
1. Barrier methods - Barrier methods are designed to prevent the sperm from entering the uterus. They constitute-
- Diaphragms: It is a shallow and flexible cup that is made of either latex or soft rubber. It is inserted into the vagina before the sexual intercourse where it prevents the sperm from entering the uterus.
- Cervical caps: It is a thin cup of silicone whose function is same as the diaphragm, only it is smaller in size, so less noticeable and more rigid as well.
- Contraceptive sponges: These are soft foam sponges that are filled with spermicide and are disposable. They are also inserted into the vagina before sexual intercourse in order to prevent pregnancy by killing the sperm cells or preventing them from entering the vagina.
- Spermicides: These are chemicals that can kill the sperm and hence assist in birth control.
Other methods include male condoms and female condoms.
2. Hormonal methods - Hormonal methods use hormones in order to either stop or regulate ovulation so as to prevent pregnancy. There are various methods through which hormones can be injected into the body.
Some of them are- Contraceptive patch: It is a thin patch made of plastic that sticks to the skin and is responsible for releasing hormones into the bloodstream through the skin.
- Vaginal rings: A thin, flexible ring that is inserted into the vagina where it stays for 3 weeks and is removed after that, only to be re-inserted in the 5th week.
- Implantable rods: They are inserted under the skin of the upper arm of women where they release progestin.
Other methods include contraceptive pills and progestin-only pills.
3. Intrauterine methods of contraception - The intrauterine device is a small device, T-shaped that is inserted into the uterus in order to prevent pregnancy. The good thing about intrauterine devices is that they can remain functioning for many years at a stretch. IUDs are two types-
- Hormonal IUD(Intrauterine Device)
- Copper IUD
Sterilization is the most reliable contraceptive for birth control as it is permanent. It either prevents the release of sperm or the fertilization of the egg. Sterilization methods can either be surgical or non-surgical. Some of the sterilization techniques are-
- Tubal ligation: It is the surgical technique used in females.
- Vasectomy: It is the surgical technique of male contraception.
Other methods include sterilization implants.