Schedule a Birth Control Consultation - Downtown Chicago
Schedule a Birth Control Consultation - Northwest Chicago

Method Explorer – Find the best birth control method for you

Birth Control

Careful and consistent use of a recommended birth control method will help prevent an unplanned pregnancy. Our staff can help you decide which method is best for you.

FPA provides the following birth control options. Our staff will help you decide which method is best for you.

Effectiveness How it is used Benefits of use Possible side effects Possible serious complications
The Pill(many brands) 92-99% You take 1 pill every day at the same time Can help protect against:

 

  • Acne
  • Endometrial and ovarian cancer
  • Excess body hair
  • Anemia
  • PMS
  • Ovarian cysts

Can generally make periods lighter and with less cramps.

 

These symptoms can occur for some women:

 

  • Bleeding/spotting between periods
  • Breast tenderness
  • Headache
  • Nausea — rarely, vomiting
  • Change in sexual desire
  • Depression
These complications are rare, but possible:

  • Blood clots in the legs or other parts of the body (more common with the patch)
  • Migraine headaches
  • High blood pressure
  • Stroke
  • Heart attack
  • Liver tumors
  • Gallstones
The Patch Ortho Evra® 92-99% lower in patients who weigh more than 198 lbs You use 1 patch per week for 3 weeks in a row. The 4th week is a patch-free week.  Can help protect against:

 

  • Acne
  • Endometrial and ovarian cancer
  • Excess body hair
  • Anemia
  • PMS
  • Ovarian Cysts

Can generally make periods more regular, lighter and with less cramps.

Easy to use–just like putting on a band-aid.

 

 These symptoms can occur for some women:

 

  • Bleeding/spotting between periods
  • Breast tenderness
  • Headache
  • Nausea — rarely, vomiting
  • Change in sexual desire
  • Depression
  • Skin irritation
 These complications are rare, but possible:

  • Blood clots in the legs or other parts of the body (more common with the patch)
  • Migraine headaches
  • High blood pressure
  • Stroke
  • Heart attack
  • Liver tumors
  • Gallstones
The Ring (Nuva Ring) 92-99% You insert 1 ring vaginally and remove it after 3 weeks.  Can help protect against:

 

  • Acne
  • Endometrial and ovarian cancer
  • Excess body hair
  • Anemia
  • PMS
  • Ovarian Cysts

Can generally make periods more regular, lighter and with less cramps.

Easy to use–similar to putting in a tampon.

 These symptoms can occur for some women:

 

  • Bleeding/spotting between periods
  • Breast tenderness
  • Headache
  • Nausea — rarely, vomiting
  • Change in sexual desire
  • Depression
  • Increased vaginal discharge, irritation and/or infection
 These complications are rare, but possible:

  • Blood clots in the legs or other parts of the body (more common with the patch)
  • Migraine headaches
  • High blood pressure
  • Stroke
  • Heart attack
  • Liver tumors
  • Gallstones
The Shot (Depo Provera) 99-99.9% You get 1 shot every 12-14 weeks (about every 3 months).  Can help protect   against:

  • Helps prevent endometrial cancer
  • Very easy to use–nothing to remember daily or monthly
These symptoms can occur for some women:

  • Change in sex drive
  • Weight gain
  • Depression
  • Hair loss, or increased hair on the face or body
  • Headache
  • Temporary decreased bone density
  • Irregular bleeding (may be less than normal, more than normal, or not at all)
These complications are rare, but possible:

  • Liver tumors
  • Gallstones
  • Ectopic pregnancy
IUC
ParaGard®
Mirena ®
Skyla ®
99% A clinician inserts the IUC into your uterus, where it stays until you request that it be removed Can help protect   against:

  • Can last from 3-10 years (depending on the device)
  • Very easy to use–nothing to remember daily or monthly
  • Can be used while breastfeeding
  • Mirena and Skyla may reduce menstrual flow
  • Paragard is safe for smokers and women with medical conditions such has high blood pressure
These symptoms can occur for some women:

  • Spotting between periods
  • Increased cramping and backaches
  • ParaGard may make your period heavier than normal
These complications are rare, but possible:

  • Uterine injury–the IUD can push through the uterus or grow into the lining of the uterus
  • IUC can be expelled (come out of the uterus)
  • Pregnancy with an IUC in place can be dangerous
  • Infection

Do you provide me with birth control?

Yes. We offer birth control to our patients immediately after the abortion, if they are medically eligible. The clinician and physician will evaluate your needs and assist you with finding an appropriate birth control method. In most cases we provide one full year of birth control. 

 

When do I start my birth control?

In most cases, you should start your birth control on the first Sunday after your abortion procedure unless you are provided different instructions by our medical staff on the day of your visit. 

Starting birth control as soon as you can after your procedure may help to reduce the amount of bleeding you have after an abortion and it will often help regulate your periods sooner. If you do not start your birth control right away after your procedure it is possible for you to become pregnant again within just a few weeks of the abortion. 

Can I have an IUD (Mirena, Sklya or Paragard) inserted right away after the abortion?

Yes, we provide intrauterine device (such as the Mirena, Skyla and Paragard) insertions immediately following an abortion procedure. One of the benefits of having an IUD inserted on the same day as an abortion procedure is that we can insert the IUD while you are still under sedation, so you will not feel any discomfort during the insertion. 

If you are having the abortion pill procedure, we can insert an IUD on the day of your required follow up visit, in most cases. 

An IUD is one of the most effective forms of birth control available. Please see our ‘Helpful Links’ page for more information about your IUD options. Most private insurance companies cover birth control, including an IUD. If you are not using your insurance for the abortion procedure, we are still happy to check your insurance for birth control coverage. 

What kind of birth control is best for me?

Finding the ‘best’ birth control method can take some time. Your needs and preferences are unique to you. Your sister may really like the ‘depo shot’ but you might prefer birth control pills or a Mirena IUD. Every woman is different–keep in mind that you may need to try a couple different methods before you find the right birth control for you! 

We recommend that you explore your options before you come in for your visit. You can go to our ‘Helpful Links’ page for more information on birth control options.

Keep in mind that most birth control methods do not help to protect you from sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) such as HIV and chlamydia. It is important to use a condom every time you have sex to protect yourself, especially if you or your partner have more than one sex partner. Some STDs are viruses can cannot be cured which means that they will never ‘go away’. If you have an STD and it is not treated quickly, it can make it harder for you to become pregnant in the future (infertility). At FPA we provide STD testing and referrals for free STD testing at your request. 

 

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