Birth Control Postpartum
Whether you are breast-feeding or not, and whether you are having any periods or not, you can still conceive. Birth Control will be discussed at your 6-week postpartum visit.
If you are breast-feeding, your options include condoms, the diaphragm, the IUD, and the mini-pill (a progesterone-only hormonal contraceptive which is FDA approved for nursing mothers).
If you are not breast-feeding, then the Birth Control Pill is also an option.
One of the best contraceptive methods for breast-feeding women is the Mini-Pill, also called Micronor, which contains a low-dose progesterone derivative. Taken daily, it provides 98% contraception to nursing mothers, and is FDA approved for this situation. The side effects are minimal, including lack of regular periods, possible spotting, and possible mild bloating. This is different than the regular birth control pill as there is no estrogen in the Mini-Pill.
The Copper-T IUD is FDA approved for up to 10 years continual use and the Mirena IUD is effective for 5-years with fewer side effects than the Copper-T. These current IUD’s have NONE of the problems associated long ago with the Dalkon Shield, and they are becoming a popular birth control option.
The above is a partial list of the major options in birth control at this time. There are others not mentioned, and new developments continue to occur, but it is helpful before the visit to have an idea of what is available so that you can be prepared.