It is important to us that you get the care you need while you are here and once you go home. That’s why we’re proud to offer you individual birth control counseling to help you find the best birth control method for you.
We offer a wide range of birth control methods including: male condoms, the birth control pill, the vaginal ring, the patch, the implant, the Depo shot and hormonal and non-hormonal IUDs.
Birth Control Pill
Birth control pills are a medication you take every day to prevent pregnancy. They are sometimes called “the pill” or oral contraceptive pills (OCPs). Most women using the pill take “combination pills”. These contain two hormones – estrogen and progestin.
Some birth control pills contain only one hormone – progestin. These are sometimes called “mini-pills” or progestin only pills (POPs). Progestin-only pills are good for women who cannot use estrogen.
The hormones in the combined pills keep your ovaries from releasing eggs (ovulation) and thicken your cervical mucus to block sperm from getting into the uterus. They can also work by changing the lining of the uterus so that an egg cannot attach to the lining of the uterus.
When taken correctly, the pill prevents pregnancy 92-99% of the time.
The vaginal ring is a small, flexible ring that contains the hormones estrogen and progestin. It is inserted in the vagina and each ring provides contraception for three weeks. There is currently one vaginal ring available called the NuvaRing.
The hormones in the ring keep your ovaries from releasing eggs (ovulation) and thicken your cervical mucus to block sperm from getting into the uterus. It can also work by changing the lining of the uterus so that an egg cannot attach to the lining of the uterus.
When used correctly, the ring prevents pregnancy 92-99% of the time.
The implant is a small, plastic rod (about the size of a matchstick) that is placed under the skin of your arm. The implant contains a progesterone-like hormone called etonogestrel that prevents pregnancy. It works by preventing ovulation and by thickening the mucus around the cervix, making it hard for sperm to enter the uterus and reach an unfertilized egg. It can also work by changing the lining of the uterus so that an egg cannot attach to the lining of the uterus. The implant is effective for up to 3 years from the time of insertion and can be removed by a trained healthcare provider at any time.
The implant is more than 99% effective.
There are currently two implant options available – Implanon and Nexplanon. Hartford GYN Center offers the Nexplanon implant to its patients.
Intrauterine Device (IUD)
An Intrauterine Device (IUD) is a small, T-shaped object that is inserted through the cervix and placed in the uterus to prevent pregnancy. The IUD is easily and quickly inserted in the uterus in the office by a trained healthcare provider.
There are currently two types of IUDs available: ParaGard and Mirena. The ParaGard can be used for up to 10 years. The Mirena can be used for up to 5 years.
The ParaGard is an IUD that does NOT contain hormones; therefore, patients are not subject to the side effects of hormones such as weight gain, mood swings or headaches. ParaGard works primarily by preventing the sperm from reaching and fertilizing the egg.
While there’s no single explanation for how Mirena may work, most likely it prevents pregnancy in several ways:
- Thicken cervical mucus to prevent sperm from entering your uterus
- Inhibit sperm from reaching or fertilizing your egg
- Make the lining of your uterus thin
Both types of IUDs can be removed before their expiration dates by a trained provider.
IUDs are 99% effective as birth control.
The shot, also known as Depo Provera or Depo, is a hormone injection that lasts for 3 months to prevent pregnancy. It contains progestin and no estrogen. It is usually given in the arm or buttocks.
Depo Provera keeps your ovaries from releasing eggs and thickens your cervical mucus to block sperm from getting into the uterus. The generic version of the shot is medroxyprogesterone (MPA). Hartford can provide a prescription for MTA which can be filled by your local pharmacy.
Depo Provera and MPA are 99.7% effective when used correctly.
As you can see there are many birth control options available to you and our goal is to find the one that best meets your needs. If you are having sex, it is important to remember that the only birth control method that reduces the risk of the transmission of sexually transmitted infections is condoms.