Contraception

Recent posts

Scented Condoms, Without The Yummy Flavor

It’s unusual for someone I know to come up with something in the contraceptive world that I haven’t heard of, so when my best friend sent me a picture of what appeared to be scented condoms I was intrigued. Unfortunately, the internet was not particularly forthcoming with information about the particular condoms in the photo. So I’m still not precisely sure if these are scented and flavored or merely scented. For other brands of condoms, it seems that scented condoms also have a flavoring of some sort and are typically brightly colored. It also seems that tropical fruit scents and flavors are more common than other scents though I have seen references to coffee scented and durian scented ones. Continue Reading →

Do Antibiotics Decrease The Effectiveness of Birth Control Pills?

The other day, a friend of mine asked me if the story that antibiotics interfere with birth control was true. I had to admit to her that I had heard the story but had no solid information to back it up. So, as any good nerd would, I decided to do some research to find out. The internet being the internet, I found quite a bit of anecdotal evidence to support the story. However, eventually I managed to find some new information. Continue Reading →

Big News: FDA Approves 5 Day Emergency Contraceptive “ella”

Yesterday evening, the NY Times reported that the FDA has approved the drug “ella” in the United States. Ella is an emergency contraceptive pill that has a longer window of effectiveness than Plan B and its generics, which are most effective within 3 days following unprotected sex. Ella is highly effective at preventing pregnancy – largely by delaying ovulation – for up to 5 days following unprotected sex. Continue Reading →

Q&A: Can birth control lower your sex drive?

Help! Birth control is killing my sex drive.  What are my options? Though many women don’t have the experience of birth control dampening their libido, some do.  Hormonal birth control (such as the birth control pill, patch, shot and ring) all have the potential to dampen a woman’s sex drive. Fortunately, there are other options. Continue Reading →

Do birth control pills make you gain weight?

Many women who are exploring their options for birth control consider taking birth control pills (also called oral contraception). They are, after all, one of the most commonly used forms of contraception in many developed countries and – when taken correctly and consistently – are about 97% to 99% effective at preventing pregnancy… though they don’t offer any protection against sexually transmissible infections (STI).  However, many women have heard that birth control pills cause women to gain weight – and that concern may keep them from taking birth control pills which are otherwise highly effective at reducing risk of pregnancy. Considering that these fears of gaining weight are keeping some women from using such effective forms of birth control (and let’s face it – pregnancy weight gain is itself quite high!), it’s worth asking: Do birth control pills actually cause women to gain weight? Continue Reading →

MSP Q&A: Can a woman get pregnant from a man’s pre-ejaculate (pre-cum)?

Not long ago, I noticed that a young woman had asked a question on Yahoo Questions about her risk of pregnancy from a situation in which she had fooled around with her boyfriend and was worried that she had gotten pregnant from his pre-ejaculate (pre-cum) as he had briefly put his penis inside her vagina without a condom. Even though she took Plan B (a form of emergency contraception, also called the morning after pill) about 19 hours following unprotected sex, she was still feeling very anxious and worried about her risk of pregnancy. This is what I said in my response:

It would be HIGHLY unlikely that you would get pregnant from this sexual encounter with your boyfriend for several reasons:

1. A woman actually does NOT have the same chance of getting pregnant from pre-ejaculate as she does from ejaculate; in fact, research studies have shown that there are very rarely any sperm at all in pre-ejaculate. Is it *possible* to get pregnant from a man’s pre-ejaculate? Continue Reading →