Contraceptive Q & A – Part 1

Whether you’re considering starting a contraceptive method or you’re already on one, chances are you probably have a lot of questions about it. Contraceptives are a great way to prevent unplanned pregnancy and regulate your hormones. But, they can be a bit difficult to understand. I’ve put together a two-part article series answering the most common questions I receive around contraceptives. Here’s part one.

Question: What’s the best contraceptive?

The best kind of contraceptive is the kind that works for you. There’s no best form or overall winner for everyone when it comes to contraceptives. Each woman must decide what works best for her, her lifestyle, and her body. Sitting down and chatting with your healthcare provider can help you decide which option is best for you and further having a discussion with your partner on the best contraceptive method will ensure you are both responsible. Here’s a guide on picking the best contraceptive for you.

Question: What’s the implant?

The implant is a small plastic rod about the size of a matchstick that a healthcare provider inserts under the skin of the upper arm. It releases a hormone that prevents pregnancy. The implant can be used for up to 3 years before having to be replaced.

Question: How long will it take for me to get pregnant when I stop preventing?

If you want to fall pregnant, a good start is talking to your healthcare provider about stopping your contraceptive method.

With oral contraceptives like the pill, it’s possible to become pregnant within 1 to 3 months after stopping the pill.

If you’re using a contraceptive injection such as Depo-Provera, it may take up to 10 months to become pregnant, in some cases. Other methods such as intrauterine devices (IUDs) or implants must be removed by a healthcare provider. After removal, pregnancy is possible at any time, depending on your body. Keep in mind that this can take up to a year, Choma, so it’s important to be patient.

Question: I’ve been preventing but I didn’t get my period this month. Am I pregnant?

If you’re regularly taking the pill or your injection shot, it’s unlikely, but still possible to fall pregnant. Remember that there could be a number of other reasons as to why you’ve missed your period such as stress, change in diet, exercise etc. If you don’t get your period for more than two months in a row, talk to your healthcare provider.

Question: Which contraceptive methods protect me against STIs?

A condom is the only protection against Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs). When used with a contraceptive of your choice, you’re not only protected from STIs but unplanned pregnancy as well. This is known as dual contraceptive method.

I hope this answered some of your questions. Leave a comment below if you have any other questions, and don’t forget to check out part two coming soon. Remember to check in with your healthcare provider if you have any concerns.

If you or a friend need advice or help, you can contact me here on Ask Choma, send me a Facebook Messagea Twitter DM, or a WhatsApp Message (071 172 3657).