Recommendations for effective non-hormonal birth control? - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 11-14-2005, 08:49 AM
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The title says it all. I've been on hormonal birth control for nearly 7 of my 21 years and am totally fed up with it. I've done the pill, the patch, and depo provera and they all leave me feeling like a different person (cranky, depressed... just different). I'm currently in a monogomous relationship (we have a lot of sex) and am looking for a birth control method that is both effective and convenient. We don't like condoms.
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#2 Old 11-14-2005, 09:19 AM
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http://www.plannedparenthood.org/pp2...on-choices.xml
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#3 Old 11-14-2005, 09:24 AM
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Quote:



Right, right.

I suppose I should have specified. I'm aware of what's out there, I'm just curious as to whether or not any of you have tried them and, if you have, which, if any, would you recommend.
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#4 Old 11-14-2005, 09:28 AM
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Everyone is differant. Some may say they hated one thing but you might love it. I would suggest trying something that's been tried and true for awhile.
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#5 Old 11-14-2005, 11:12 AM
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I've had success with the diaphragm and would recommend it to anyone. The only drawback is that you have to have it with you, ruling spontenaity a little out unless you're at home (and then you have to leave it in for at least 6 hours). Otherwise, it works well.
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#6 Old 11-14-2005, 11:48 AM
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Originally Posted by OregonAmy View Post

I've had success with the diaphragm and would recommend it to anyone. The only drawback is that you have to have it with you, ruling spontenaity a little out unless you're at home (and then you have to leave it in for at least 6 hours). Otherwise, it works well.



What are your reasons for liking it, though? Is it comfortable? Is it difficult to remove? Are they easily broken? I've never seen one before, in person. I don't know what they feel like.
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#7 Old 11-14-2005, 12:09 PM
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here's PP's info on it:

http://www.plannedparenthood.com/pp2...vical-caps.xml



A diaphragm is basically a rubber "bowl" with a springy ring that keeps its shape in addition to holding it in place.



Here's an image search on what they look like:

http://images.google.com/images?svnu...gm&btnG=Search



Their effective rate isn't as high as hormonal BC, but then I haven't seen anything that IS as effective (in stats) as hormonal BC, including FAM.
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#8 Old 11-14-2005, 12:11 PM
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#9 Old 11-15-2005, 03:18 PM
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I'm like you I HATE HATE HATE hormones. I was on them for a while when I didn't want to take any risk of getting pregnant whatsoever, and we used both the pill and condoms all the time, but a year into our relationship we were a bit more stable and decided to start using FAM with condoms during fertile times... FAM I've read all different stats for FAM but it really depends on how carefully you follow the rules... some people have trouble I guess, lol. I've seen stats that say it's up to 99% effective though... It's been good for me, personally, and relatively easy to learn. And I feel like ME again. I hate condoms too, but to me it's worth using condoms during fertile times because I have my libido back, and I actually have a RANGE of emotions, lol.
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#10 Old 11-16-2005, 05:24 PM
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i think it's really sad that you've been on hormones since you were 13. that's before your body has even regulated into it's own cycle. man. . .



anyway, if you're diligent, fertility awareness method is great. you can use barrier contraceptives when you're fertile, and when you're not, you don't have to worry about it because you're not fertile. if you follow the rules, it's as effective as the pill. if you don't, like any form of BC, it will fail.



here's some links: Taking Charge of Your Fertility and Garden of Fertility
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#11 Old 11-16-2005, 09:56 PM
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So... I'm thinking FAM along with a diaphragm. That could work. I'll definetly look into those links, zoebird! If it looks like something that I might be interested in, I'll get a few books. I've read a few things here and there about FAM and have always thought that it sounded great. I'm so excited to start! I'm not due for another exam until April, so I plan on waiting to switch until then. It feels good to have a tentative plan, though.
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#12 Old 11-17-2005, 10:41 AM
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Yeah, you can always do some reading and stuff now and then you'll be prepared come April. It is definitely advised to make sure that you've got backup for in the beginning when you're doing FAM and getting used to how it works.



Best of luck! Sounds like a great tentative plan.
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#13 Old 11-18-2005, 01:49 PM
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we use a 'back up' too. a barrier contraception with FAM is very effective.



one of the benefits of FAM is that you know/understand cervical position. knowing when your cervical is at it's 'largest' and 'lowest' point (fertile period) helps when fitting a cervical cap or diaphragm. these two fail usually because they are ill fitting, because a woman doesn't know when to go in for a fitting because she doesn't know where or cervical is or when it will be in the best position for fitting! that is, a lot of women get fit when they're not fertile, so that when they are, the diaphragm or cervical cap is too small and then the device fails.



by practicing FAM (even while on the pill) before you start using it as your primary (with the diaphragm being your secondary), you'll get a good handle on how it works and when you should schedule your fitting!
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#14 Old 11-18-2005, 06:25 PM
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I LIKE the hormones in the birth control pills....they keep me regulated..my period AND my emotions. I'm making another attempt to go off of them, so wish me luck. (Don't need alternatives unless I can find a doctor willing to remove my womb.)
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#15 Old 11-18-2005, 07:03 PM
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heh... yeah... the hormones did have a few good side effects for me. One would be reducing my menstrual cramps, and the other would be keeping my skin clear. For me, the bad overpowered the good. Lack of sex drive, lack of er... lubrication, feeling completely unemotional all the time, and being worried about possible long term effects on my cycles all made me feel like the pill was not for me. However, for my mom, for example, they are great, never had bad side effects, and effectively kept her non-pregnant whenever she didn't want to be pregnant and cleared her system fast when she did want to be.
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#16 Old 11-18-2005, 07:13 PM
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No sex drive works well for me since I'm single. That's another of the things that I like about bc pills.
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#17 Old 11-18-2005, 08:18 PM
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I don't like hormones because it takes away my sex drive, but the last time I thought I'd try to get off them I got such horrible cramps all three months I was off them, I decided it was worth my lowered sex drive.
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#18 Old 11-20-2005, 10:01 AM
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there are ways to discover the origins of cramps and ways to allieviate them naturally.



the really sad part about the lowered sex drive thing is that current research on the topic is beginning to show that the effect may be permanent, well after the woman has stopped using the pill, as compared to women who never used the pill or only used it for a small amount of time (like me, who only used it for about 4 months).
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#19 Old 11-20-2005, 04:23 PM
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Originally Posted by zoebird View Post

there are ways to discover the origins of cramps and ways to allieviate them naturally.



the really sad part about the lowered sex drive thing is that current research on the topic is beginning to show that the effect may be permanent, well after the woman has stopped using the pill, as compared to women who never used the pill or only used it for a small amount of time (like me, who only used it for about 4 months).





Are you serious? Do you have a link to where you read that?
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#20 Old 11-20-2005, 05:47 PM
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Stellar, like you, I've been on BC (both oral and Depo-Provera) for a long time and am looking for other methods. We have been together 10 years and do not want children, so we are looking at getting him snipped. I already went off the pill in May, and we're using condoms while we wait to see how I like being off the pill, but condoms are not a satisfactory long-term method for us. The thought crossed my mind that FAM + diaphragm might be workable if we don't wind up doing the vasectomy.



I'm also alarmed at zoebird's report of this new research. Lack of libido/lubrication was one of my bigger annoyances with BC! My libido did bounce back somewhat when I went off, but things seemed to even out after a couple months, and it's not really much higher than it was before. Of course, I've been on the pill so long, how would I even know what I'm like without it??
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#21 Old 11-20-2005, 05:54 PM
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I've never considered non-hormonal BC. I am happy with Seasonale. It has the added bonus of only dealing with the unpleasantness of my period 4 times a year. And since using it, when I do get it...the cramps are non-existent. 5 days, regular flow, 4 times a year. So far, no other side effects

My sex drive is low anyway so I can't contribute that to any one thing other than my self-esteem / body issues.
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#22 Old 11-20-2005, 10:46 PM
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Originally Posted by vggiegirl View Post

I've never considered non-hormonal BC. I am happy with Seasonale. It has the added bonus of only dealing with the unpleasantness of my period 4 times a year. And since using it, when I do get it...the cramps are non-existent. 5 days, regular flow, 4 times a year. So far, no other side effects

My sex drive is low anyway so I can't contribute that to any one thing other than my self-esteem / body issues.



I just don't see how having your period only 4 times a year can be healthy. Our bodies are designed to have it much more often than that, and perfectly content with that. I don't think of my period as 'unpleasent' in the slightest.
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#23 Old 11-20-2005, 10:51 PM
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some of us do



Here's a thread about the loss of libido:

https://www.veggieboards.com/boards/s...ad.php?t=38286



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#24 Old 11-20-2005, 10:56 PM
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Originally Posted by stellar26 View Post

I just don't see how having your period only 4 times a year can be healthy. Our bodies are designed to have it much more often than that, and perfectly content with that.



Not really.



Consider that before the days of birth control, a woman could be pregnant every year or two (and often was). Women weren't exactly having periods all that often.



Also, there was some debate in the medical community a few years ago that one of the main reasons for the rise in female problems (cancers, endo, infertility, etc) was due to large amounts of periods a woman has over the span of her life as opposed to how it was earlier in our history. The last I read there was going to be long term studies on it.
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#25 Old 11-20-2005, 11:06 PM
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Originally Posted by stellar26 View Post

I just don't see how having your period only 4 times a year can be healthy. Our bodies are designed to have it much more often than that, and perfectly content with that. I don't think of my period as 'unpleasent' in the slightest.



I've often wondered this too. I've seen several seemingly independent physicians saying that 4x's/year was enough. Yet, when I was doing research to solve my own girl problems, lack of regular menstruation was suggested as a possible cause in many problems...endometrial cancer in particular. Ironically, this is one of the reasons that I went on bcp - to straighten things out.

The ones I pity are the ones who never stick out their neck for something they believe, never know the taste of moral struggle, and never have the thrill of victory. - Jonathan Kozol
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#26 Old 11-21-2005, 01:46 AM
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Try checking out a book called Eve's Herbs (forgot the author) ...it talks about what women have used for BC or even abortifacients (induce abortion) throughout history. problem- not much info on how effective they are in people...but I believe pomegranet (sp?) was like..90% something effective in rats...Queen Anne's Lace seeds....mugwort...even things like parsley, sage (herbs you find in your cupboards)....high doses of vitamin C



Just make sure you read up before trying anything. Interesting web sites out there on it, even just for curiosity's sake.
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#27 Old 11-21-2005, 10:58 AM
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I use the NuvaRing and I think it's great. It has much lower doses of hormones than some other forms of BC, since it is delivered right to the source, as it were. (It's a plstic ring worn in the vagina for 3 weeks, then it's out one week, then you put a new one in.) I can't tell I'm wearing it, and my husband has also not noticed it either - although if the idea of having sex with it in makes you uncomfortable, it can be removed for a few hours, without rendering it ineffective. (They have a website with all sorts of FAQs and stuff about that.)



Just my two cents on natural family planning/rhythm methods, etc. It can be highly ineffective for some women, and not because they aren't following it 'properly'. Some women, scientists have discovered, are fertile just about all darn month. Also, women with less than clockwork-like menstruation schedules may find it impossible to follow with any certainty. In the 1950s, when there were debates in front of the Senate about the availability of birth control, there was one woman who testified about using natural family planning. She had such a hard time with it, she and her husband would abstain for months on end, to try to figure out her cycle. She ended up with 13 children.



It's great that it works for some people, but if you are in a position where you really don't want to get pregnant, then I would suggest using another method.
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#28 Old 11-21-2005, 12:30 PM
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Just my two cents on natural family planning/rhythm methods, etc. It can be highly ineffective for some women, and not because they aren't following it 'properly'. Some women, scientists have discovered, are fertile just about all darn month. Also, women with less than clockwork-like menstruation schedules may find it impossible to follow with any certainty. In the 1950s, when there were debates in front of the Senate about the availability of birth control, there was one woman who testified about using natural family planning. She had such a hard time with it, she and her husband would abstain for months on end, to try to figure out her cycle. She ended up with 13 children.



It's great that it works for some people, but if you are in a position where you really don't want to get pregnant, then I would suggest using another method.



The Fertility Awareness Methods that most people use now are much more highly advanced than the Rhythmn Method of the 50's, FYI... Obviously, I don't care if YOU don't use it, but it's worth knowing it's not a crock.
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#29 Old 11-21-2005, 02:37 PM
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similarly, women do not generally ovulate all month long, nor do their bodies make cervical fluid all month long--thus making them fertile every day of the cycle.



there may be false 'spikes' or false fertility signals and women can be fertile during menstruation and not know it because they cannot 'read' for cervical fluid, but i have not read any compelling evidence anywhere that some women are fertile every day of their cycle. Similarly, even if they are, they can use a secondary, barrier method, instead of hormones.



FAM does not require regular periods or even a regular fertility cycle. It only requires regular observation of occurances and an understanding of what those occurances indicate. it takes about 2 minutes a day to do. It's effective for most women, if they're willing to actually learn how to do it.
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