Think Contraception: What are my options?

When it comes to contraception, it is important to find an option that is right for you.

Your CarePlus Pharmacist or GP can discuss with you more appropriate methods to use, the effectiveness of each and potential side effects. The following are long-term contraception options that may be used.

The Pill
The pill is a prescription medication containing hormones that is taken by a woman every day for 21 days with a 7 day break or every day without a break. There are various types and brands of the contraceptive pill. Some work by preventing ovulation, while others work by preventing sperm reaching the cervix. It is a very effective method provided it is taken correctly. With a prescription from your GP, this can be filled in your local CarePlus Pharmacy.

Injectable contraception
This is an injection that is administered to a woman by a doctor or surgery nurse every 12 weeks. It works by preventing ovulation and is very effective at preventing pregnancy when used correctly.

Intrauterine device (IUD)
Sometimes referred to as the coil, this is also used as a method of emergency contraception in certain cases. It is a small copper device that is inserted by a trained doctor into a woman’s womb. It works by stopping sperm from meeting the egg or by delaying the egg getting into the womb. It is very effective and starts working as soon as it is inserted.

Intrauterine system
Similar to the above, this is a small plastic device that is inserted into a woman’s womb. It releases hormones that prevent sperm from meeting the egg, by delaying an egg reaching the womb or by preventing an egg from attaching to the womb.

Implant
This is a small flexible rod that is inserted by a trained doctor under the skin of a woman’s upper arm. It releases hormones that prevent ovulation and prevent the body from creating a suitable environment for pregnancy. This works for up to three years.

Contraceptive patch
A patch that is worn by a woman for 21 days, with a break of 7 days before attaching a new patch. It releases hormones through the skin to prevent ovulation. It is very effective if used correctly every day.

Vaginal ring
This is a flexible ring that is inserted by a woman into her vagina for 3 weeks of every month. It releases hormones into the body that prevent ovulation and is very effective if used correctly.

Diaphragm cap
This is a barrier method of contraception used by a woman. It fits inside the vagina to cover the cervix, preventing the sperm from reaching the egg. It is used in conjunction with Spermicide which destroys sperm. This method is very effective if used carefully.

Condoms
There are both male and female condoms. They both consist of a sheath which covers either the cervix or penis to prevent the transfer of sperm. They are effective once used very carefully. They can be used with other methods of contraception as well as to prevent the transfer of STIs or STDs.

SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED INFECTIONS & DISEASES (STI/STD’s)

Infections or diseases can be transferred from one person to another through bodily fluids and are commonly spread during sexual intercourse. They can be extremely harmful, causing infertility, severe illness or death. Emergency contraception will not prevent the transfer of these diseases or infections.

If you are concerned about STIs or STDs, call into your local CarePlus Pharmacy and speak to your Pharmacist or visit your nearest sexual health clinic. Visit www.thinkcontraception.ie to learn more about STIs or STDs and where your nearest clinic is located.

 



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