Nothing lasts forever, even the birth control choices you make or what you’d like your contraceptive choice to do for you. Whether you want to begin using birth control for the first time, resume contraception after having children, or just want to change the birth control you currently are on, you’ve got a myriad of options.
When it comes to birth control, “the pill” is no longer your only choice. While birth control pills are still widely used, there are other contraceptive means that are just as effective, and some that are even more effective. All of which offer varying degrees of convenience and permanency.
What works best for someone else might not work best for you. So when you come into FamilyCare of Kent, we help you choose the birth control that will best fit into your lifestyle. Our nurse practitioner and women’s health expert, Bob Smithing has developed a unique system to help you choose out of the many birth control options for women.
Bob carries 9 buttons, each with one attribute to customize your birth control. He developed this system based on his years of caring for women, listening to their personal needs. He realized that each woman has different priorities when it comes to using birth control – some want the convenience of birth control that also offers health benefits, while for others low cost is the most important factor.
Our birth control priority buttons include options such as:
- Most Effective: For most women, this is the top priority. After all, if you’re using birth control to protect against unwanted pregnancy, you want it to be effective. The only 100% foolproof way to avoid pregnancy is abstinence. But if that were an option for you, you wouldn’t be searching for birth control. So your best options include intrauterine devices (IUDs) and implants, which have a failure rate of less than 2 in 1,000. Compared to oral contraceptives and skin patches, with a failure rate of about 90 per 1,000, Liletta, Mirena, Skyla and Kyleena (IUDs) and Nexplanon, an implant, are much more effective.
- Non-Contraceptive Benefits: As a teenager, you may have tried birth control to help manage your acne or regulate your cycles. But that’s not all birth control can do for your women’s health. Oral contraceptives have been shown to reduce your risk of ovarian cancer by 40%. Birth control use can also be used to treat painful periods, manage PMS symptoms, reduce excess body hair, and blood loss to treat anemia, as well as to prevent recurrent bacterial vaginosis (BV) infections.
- Low Cost: What good is birth control if you can’t afford to use it? We offer many affordable birth control options based on long-term usage. If you only want to prevent birth control for a year or two, your cost-effective birth control options may be different than if you want longer lasting contraception.
- Hassle Free: Put your birth control to work for you without having to hassle with reapplying patches that fall off or remembering to take a pill or apply/remove a barrier method. We can help you choose from hassle-free birth control methods such as an IUD or implant.
- Forgettable / Fool Proof: The pill offers many benefits, but if you don’t remember to take it every day at about the same time of day, it can prove less effective. For many of today’s busy women, fool-proof birth control is a desirable feature. These options include IUDs, implants, and “the shot” Depo-Provera.
- Hormone Free: For some women, health concerns interfere with the ability to use hormonal birth control methods. Some just desire birth control that doesn’t interfere with their hormones, especially if they are already healthy. Diaphragms, female condoms, and certain IUDs fit into this category.
- STI Protection: While you can’t protect against any type of sexually transmitted diseases or infections, the birth control you choose may be able to prevent STIs. Barrier methods such as FemCap, diaphragms, and female condoms are great for a dual-purpose birth control.
- Top Secret: For women seeking to keep their birth control usage discreet, the best options are those that leave no evidence behind. The shot, Depo-Provera, as well as implants allow you to prevent unwanted pregnancy without anyone ever finding out. These are great options for teens and young adults.
- Low “Ick” Factor: Sex and birth control can be a little less messy with certain options that don’t require insertion into the vagina. Choosing this as one of your priorities helps us eliminate methods such as the NuvaRing, FemCap, diaphragms, and female condoms.
With all the different birth control options available, it may be a little confusing as to which option is the best for you and your individual circumstances. After you look through the buttons, we have you choose your top two or three priorities and then pick the birth control that is best suited for you.
As Bob says, the best birth control is the one YOU want to use. The dedicated nurse practitioners at FamilyCare of Kent will work with you to find the birth control option that is best for you, no matter which birth control needs are your priority. With knowledge, we empower you so you can make an informed decision about your own health.
As birth control options have increased dramatically over the years, Bob’s buttons have allowed women to match their contraceptive to their lifestyle, budget, and health goals. To make an appointment with Bob or one of our other nurse practitioners customizing birth control and advancing women’s health in Kent, call (253) 859-CARE now or request an appointment online.