Children are truly a blessing in every person’s life. They are a bundle of joy and make living complete, showing us the true meaning of love!What if you had not planned for a child??
Unwanted/unplanned pregnancies are the worst nightmare to both the guy and the girl involved! They catch you completely unaware and put your personal life and the life of the kid in jeopardy. Financially and personally, you need to be stable and willing to bring up a new life into the world. It is a big responsibility and only when you and your partner are sure of giving the child a safe and healthy atmosphere to grow in, should you even think of starting a family.
There are 2 ways to prevent unwanted pregnancy
- Total abstinence from being sexually active
- Using the right contraceptives
If you can go with the former, that’s the best of all methods!! Stop reading this and go do your work. If not, read on!!
Not planning for a child does not mean being sexual inactive all the time. You just need to understand how a woman’s menstrual cycle works and take the right birth control measures. Birth control measures not only prevent pregnancy, it also helps ward off sexually transmitted diseases including HIV.
How does a woman’s menstrual cycle work?
Not getting into a lot of complicated names, let me make this simple for you. The menstrual cycle is the way a woman’s body prepares itself for a possible pregnancy. A cycle is from the first day of the period or when the menstrual bleeding starts to the first day of the next period. It usually ranges between 21 – 35 days. In the first half of the cycle, the lining of the uterus grows to accommodate a possible pregnancy. During about the middle of the cycle, an egg from the ovary starts to mature and reaches the fallopian tube, waiting for a sperm to fertilize it. If the sperm fertilizes the egg, it attaches itself to the uterus wall, growing into a fetus. Else, the wall of the uterus sheds away, commonly called the menstrual period.
The safe period
Usually it is believed that the first one week just after the completion of your period and the last one week before the start of the next period are safe. That means that the chance of getting pregnant is very less. This though applies only to women who have completely reliable menstrual cycle without any irregularities. Even with regular cycles, it is not a 100% guarantee! So it is better to use any of the contraceptive method given below all the time.
Types of popular contraceptives
Oral contraceptive pills
There are two kinds of oral contraceptive pills that are to be taken regularly. Combined oral contraceptive pill contains Estrogen and Progestogen, and is taken once a day, in a cyclical manner every month. The other one is the Progestogen only pill, which contains Progestogen, and is taken once every day. Consult your doctor on the right way to have them.
Emergency contraceptive pills
These contraceptive pills are taken in case of other contraceptive failures or unplanned intercourse. They are to be consumed within 72 hours of the act, though the effectiveness is high within the first 24 hours. These pills can cause irregular/delayed menses for the next couple of cycles and cause nausea, vomiting and pain in few cases. Remember, they are for emergency purposes. It is good to be cautious the first place.
Intrauterine Contraceptive Device
It is a small plastic device inserted into a woman’s uterus to prevent pregnancy It makes the uterus lining hostile to any fertilized ovum that attaches itself there. It can cause heavy bleeding and pain in few cases.
These hormones and when injected in a muscle, prevents pregnancy. The effect of the injection lasts usually two to three months. It has to be repeated after that.
They are probably the easiest contraceptive method available. There are two kinds of condoms
- Female condom – a small flexible pouch inserted into the vagina.
- Male condom – This sheath or pouch that prevents the sperm from entering into the woman’s body.
Both types of condoms are for single time use and are effective in preventing pregnancy and STD’s.
There are different brands and varieties of condoms that you can choose to buy from any health store/website.
You can self check for pregnancy at home using various test kits available and a confirmation from a doctor is the next step for confirmation. There are several reasons other than pregnancy why your menstrual cycle gets delayed.
Never take a risk of an unwanted pregnancy. It is good to be safe. Take care.