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Myths and Facts About Birth Control

Birth control gives you options. It gives you the opportunity to be sexually active and not become a parent before you want to. There are also lots of choices when it comes to birth control, so there’s something to suit virtually every woman’s needs. 

Unfortunately, there are also many myths about birth control. Edward J. Ramirez, MD, and our staff at the Fertility and Gynecology Center - Monterey Bay IVF want you to have the benefit of birth control, along with the information you need to make decisions that fit your life. 

Among the services we offer are wellness exams and evaluations, which include birth control information and prescription. 

Here are five myths about birth control you may have encountered, and the factual information you need. 

Myth 1: You’re safe from STDs

Most forms of birth control don’t protect you from sexually transmitted diseases. So even if you use birth control pills, patches, implants, or an intrauterine device, your partner needs to use a condom, or you need to abstain from sex unless you’re in a long-term, monogomous relationship. 

Condoms lower your risk of contracting herpes, gonorrhea, and chlamydia, but they aren’t 100% effective in preventing disease or pregnancy. 

Myth 2: Birth control pills affect future fertility 

If you take birth control pills for many years, then decide to become pregnant, it may take some time for your body to adjust. Your body may not start ovulating for a few months, but that doesn’t make you infertile. 

Dr. Rameriz is a fertility specialist who can answer any questions about what you should expect after you stop taking the pill. 

Myth 3: Hormones are a necessary part of birth control

A copper intrauterine device, or IUD, is a non-hormonal form of birth control. It can stay in place for up to 10 years and works by causing a mild immune system response in your body that prevents pregnancy. 

Myth 4: Taking the morning-after pill is the same as abortion

The morning-after pill is a form of emergency contraception that you can use up to 120 hours after you’ve had unprotected sex. It’s not the same as an abortion, which is a medical procedure to remove an embryo or fetus. 

Myth 5: If you’re near age 40, you don’t need birth control

Women can get pregnant until menopause, and for some women that means well into their 40s or even 50s. Menopause is technically the date when you have not had your period for 12 months in a row. It’s only after that milestone that you can no longer become pregnant. 

Perimenopause, or the period leading up to menopause, can last as long as 10 years, and you could become pregnant during that time. 

If you’re ready to learn the facts about birth control, as well as which method is likely to work best for you, schedule an appointment with Dr. Ramirez. He can answer your questions and make suggestions based on your specific situation. 

To learn more, schedule an appointment by using our online tool or calling our office in Monterey, California.

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