Birth control is an integral part of family planning, and it starts with finding the right medical doctor. Capital Women’s Care in Arlington and McLean, Virginia offers a diverse and talented group of medical professionals in its all-women practice. They educate their patients on the various birth control methods available to them, so they can make smart choices that fit perfectly with their goals and lifestyles. If you are looking to discuss birth control, call the Capital Women’s Care office to make an appointment.
When people hear the term birth control, they often think of birth control pills, but that is just one type of available contraception. Technically, birth control means anything from natural planning to over-the-counter products to a prescription device such as an IUD.
There are different success rates and risk factors for each kind of birth control, so it’s critical to talk to a specialist such as Dr. Cobbs or Dr. Caskie before making a choice. The doctor assesses not just the patient's medical status but lifestyle and preferences before making a recommendation.
Birth control pills are certainly one of the most common forms of contraceptives. There are various types available. Conventional ones contain either estrogen and progestin or progestin only.
Even within each grouping, there are different options available. For the combination pill, patients can take either a monophasic or multiphasic pill, for example. The goal is to either suppress ovulation or thicken the uterine wall so that it’s not optimal for egg implantation. Some pills do both of these things.
The vaginal ring NuvaRing works a lot like birth control pills but without having to deal with it daily. The ring sits in the vagina for three weeks to release estrogen and progestin and then comes out for one week during the patient’s period.
Like the pill, there are several long-lasting yet reversible ways to prevent conception. These are good for women who have trouble taking the pill or who just don’t want to bother with it. They are for the patient who wants to get pregnant but not anytime soon, too.
There are three basic types:
The intrauterine device, or IUD, is referred to as the "fit and forget" method. Dr. Williams or one of her colleagues at Capital Women’s Care fits either a copper IUD or a hormonal one into the patient, and it stays there for five years or more.
Nexplanon is an implant that is also a fit-and-forget device. It's injected just under the skin and releases progestogen into the body for up to five years.
Injections such as Depo-Provera work for just 12 weeks, so they are easier than the pill but less long-lasting than the other methods.