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Effective Birth Control Methods After Delivery

"What are the birth control methods after delivery?" this is one of the common questions asked by the new moms. Remember, you CAN get pregnant while breastfeeding. Therefore, in order to avoid conception at this stage, you need to be aware of certain methods for playing it safe.

Sex After Delivery

Earlier, women were advised not to indulge in sexual intercourse up to six weeks after delivery. If you have no qualms with this restriction, then it's fine. Simply wait for this time period. Many women do not have the urge to have sex after delivery, as there is a drastic change in the hormone chemistry at this stage.

It takes a couple of weeks for your vagina to heal and the cervix to close. If you have had a complication-free delivery, then you can have sex just after two weeks of delivery. However, consult your doctor to rule out any possibility of harm. You could become fertile again after two weeks of your delivery.

The following are certain birth control methods that can be tried during this time. Consult your doctor before opting for any one of them.

Lactational Amenorrhea Method (LAM) For Birth Control

LAM is also referred to as breastfeeding method. It is like this: you breastfeed your tiny tot from both your breasts every 4 hours. During the night, you breastfeed her every 6 hours.

Only those women who are nursing can use this method. Besides, you should not have had your period since delivery. LAM works for six months only. After that, you will have to shift to another birth control method.

Barrier Methods Of Birth Control

Barrier methods for preventing pregnancy include condoms, sponges, female condoms, and prescription barrier based techniques. Such methods do not cause any harm to your nursing baby, as feared by some women. For many prescription barrier techniques, you will have to wait for at least six to eight weeks after giving birth. Some of the barriers include cervical caps, diaphragms, and shields.

CAUTION: in case you opt for a barrier-based technique with a spermicide, make sure that your vagina is completely healed before using it and having sex.

Hormonal Methods Of Birth Control

Nursing mothers CANNOT opt for combination hormone treatment that contains estrogen, or ethinyl estradiol. This means taking combination pills, wearing the Patch, and using the Vaginal Ring is a strict NO for you. The estrogen will enter your breast milk and may affect your infant. It also alters your milk supply.

Nursing mothers can use progestin-only methods for avoiding pregnancy. This means progestin-only pills, also known as mini-pills, Mirena, and Depo-Provera, and a hormonal intrauterine device (IUD) are for you. According to doctors, progestins cannot enter your breast milk, as they are too big, and do not affect your infant.

However, mind you, there is a debate between doctors on the use of progestin-only methods. Some doctors do not believe that progestin, especially the mini-pills, does not affect the breast milk supply.

If you are doubtful, forget hormonal methods and opt for other ways of birth control such as barrier methods, or simply do not have sex for some time!