Hey friends! This post is more relevant to people with a uterus, but just because you don’t have one doesn’t mean you can’t read this and learn something new. This is part 1 out of at least 2 about birth control and a couple other uterus related things.

So, I have realized that one day spent talking about the numerous types in sophomore wellness class is really not enough. I mean, we learn a lot but it’s easy to forget or get confused. 

(Source: anatomy-medicine)

Did you know that there are birth control types to avoid if you have a history of cancer? Did you know that some last for like a bazillion (more like 7 actually) years and some only work by month? Or that there are pills, patches, wires, and so many more ways to take birth control? Or even that birth control isn’t taken just to avoid getting pregnant, but to control acne and periods?

Here’s a list of some common birth control methods and information about how they function. The information is from reliable sources, mainly Planned Parenthood, so check out their website if you have more questions.

Birth control pills, according to Young Women’s Health, can be used to relieve heavy periods, endometriosis, and acne, or control irregular cycles or painful cramps because the pills and some other contraceptives function by lowering the levels of certain hormones like progestin and estrogen.

These are  the more short-term, daily/monthly birth control methods.

  • Morning-After Pill: This is an emergency contraceptive that is most effective when taken after at most 3 days post unprotected sex. There are many different brands such as Plan B, Ella, and Para Guard IUD – they all function a little differently and vary in cost but all serve to prevent pregnancy in an emergency situation. 
  • Birth Control Patch: The patch controls the ovaries’ release of the egg by altering hormone levels in the body such as estrogen and progestin which also thickens the cervical mucus to help prevent sperm from reaching the eggs. The patch is worn for three weeks, put on once a week, and then the fourth week you go patch free – this is the week you get your period. The patch helps to control the regularity of your period and can also relieve heavy flow and extremely painful cramps.
  • Birth Control Pill and Combination Pill: The pill functions similarly to the patch, except they’re taken daily. Like the patch, the pill must be taken at consistent times. The birth control pill only contains progestin and/or is more specifically for pregnancy or relieving heavy periods. The combination pill contains other substances and hormones, helping to treat a larger range of issues related to the uterus. They can even stop your period all together – not permanently though.
  • NuvaRing: The NuvaRing is a vaginal ring that is inserted monthly to prevent pregnancy. It functions in the same way as the pill and patch and helps to relieve a range of other issues such as heavy periods and cramps.

Alright, next week you’ll hear about more long term birth control methods. I hope this helped some of you!