Polycystic ovary syndrome, or PCOS, is an endocrine disorder that affects reproductive-aged women. According to the Mayo Clinic, symptoms of this condition include menstrual cycles that are either less frequent or longer than average, elevated levels of male hormones, and/or an inability to consistently release eggs. Though it has a weighty sounding name, up to 12% of American women of childbearing age are diagnosed with it annually, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Because PCOS results in irregular egg release, it can be very challenging to keep track of when you are ovulating. Because of this, it is crucial that women with PCOS find effective methods of birth control in order to control their fertility and avoid unwanted pregnancies. Hormonal contraceptives and non-hormonal contraceptives are the two most common types currently available. According to Healthline, one uses hormones while the other does not in order to prevent pregnancy, and the names of the two methods give this difference away. Copper intrauterine devices and condoms are two methods that do not use hormones (per HealthyWomen).
There is no “best” method of contraception for PCOS patients, but certain methods may be more suitable than others.
Methods of Contraception with the Highest Prevalence
PCOS causes hormonal imbalances and irregular cycles, making it difficult to predict when you will be fertile. This is according to the Mayo Clinic. Pregnant people and those who wish to remain childfree may find this frustrating. Due to this, hormonal birth control is the method of choice for most women with PCOS. According to PopSugar, birth control’s hormonal components help the body reestablish homeostasis and normalize the menstrual cycle.
Those with PCOS who are prescribed hormonal birth control will most likely receive a combination of estrogen and progestin. According to research done in 2020, this combination is the most commonly prescribed hormonal method of contraception. There are birth control options that only contain progestin if a patient does not want to take estrogen birth control or is unable to take it for medical reasons. According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, these techniques are not effective in controlling menstrual bleeding.
Now, check out this: How Various Methods Of Birth Control Work, Breakdown, and Explanation
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