It’s easy to be swayed by misinformation when considering birth control for the first time. The internet is full of articles that make it sound like taking a pill will transform who you are as a person. The truth is much more grounded than that. Actually, birth control is a great option – that is, when you take the myths out of the equation.
Here at Lotus Gynecology Health and Wellness, we want you to be well-informed and comfortable with your decision. So, we’ve done our research and debunked a list of the most common birth control myths. Read on and when you’re ready, get in touch to explore your options here at our Austin, Texas office.
Myth #1: The Pill Is Your Best Birth Control Option
According to 2017-2019 data collected by the CDC, oral contraception is the birth control of choice (right behind female sterilization). But while it’s the most common, it’s not the only option available. Just because “the pill” was first doesn’t make it the best option for you.
At Lotus, we offer several options alongside the pill and will work with you to explore the best choice to fit your needs. Our options include:
- Implanon® and Nexplanon® Implants – These are small, matchstick-sized devices that are implanted inside the bicep and slowly release hormones. They last for three years.
- Ortho Evra and NuvaRing® – Ortho Evra is a patch that needs to be replaced each week. NuvaRing® is a hormonal ring inserted into the vagina for three weeks of every month.
- Depo Provera Shot – This is an injection that provides hormonal contraception for 90 days. You will have to return to our office for follow-up injections.
- Mirena® and Paragard® IUDs – These small T-shaped devices are inserted into the uterus. Mirena® slowly releases hormones to prevent pregnancy and lasts for three years. Paragard® is a non-hormonal option that uses copper to prevent pregnancy and can provide protection for 10 years.
Myth #2: Birth Control Causes Weight Gain
Hormonal methods do have an effect on your body but typically don’t cause weight gain. According to a research paper published in InformedHealth.org, birth control is unlikely to have an effect on a woman’s weight. While some fluid retention, or “water weight,” is likely when you first start birth control, it usually goes away within 2-3 months.
Myth #3: Birth Control Is Only Used to Prevent Pregnancy
While it’s true that birth control is mainly used to prevent pregnancy, that isn’t the only benefit it can provide. Depending on your chosen method, you can also find greater comfort and even minimize the risk of certain diseases. Extra benefits may include:
- Lighter and shorter periods.
- An improvement in acne.
- Lessened PMS symptoms.
- More manageable and less painful menstrual cramps.
- Reduced risk of developing ovarian cysts and cyst-related ovarian cancer.
Myth #4: These Methods Are Foolproof and Always Prevent Pregnancy
There is room for error when it comes to contraception. Unfortunately, the only way to not get pregnant with all certainty is to remain abstinent. With birth control, accidents can still happen. Skipping a day when taking the pill can end up in pregnancy. Similarly, while effective, IUDs and other methods work 98-99% of the time, leaving some room for error.
It’s also important to remember that most contraception methods don’t work immediately. When starting a hormonal treatment, for example, you shouldn’t expect your body to change the moment you start. It takes time for your body to adapt, and in most cases, it’s wise to still use a condom while on hormonal birth control.
Find The Support You Deserve Here at Lotus!
Get the facts on safe sex and find the support you deserve here at Lotus. We offer several birth control options to meet your specific needs and help you feel protected. To get on the birth control that’s right for you, contact our team at (512) 716-0971 or use the form below.