The Female Toolkit: A Complete Birth Control Breakdown From An OB/GYN

When it comes to contraceptives, the myths and misconceptions are getting out of control. Millennials have impending questions like, will birth control lead to weight gain? Can those virus-killing antibiotics also lead to an unwanted pregnancy? What's behind the acronym of an IUD?

With the help of Board-Certified OB/GYN Dr. Shelena Lalji, we're breaking down birth control. We'll help you figure out which options are best for you, how effective they are at preventing pregnancy, and how much each form of contraception might cost.*

The reality is, birth control options are often taken for granted. We become so accustomed to them, we no longer feel the need to assess the options and risks.

According to Dr. Shel (as she's affectionately known by her patients), however, the choices we have in preventing pregnancy are individualized, and should be reviewed with our healthcare provider during our annual OB check-up.

“I think it's very important for young women as well as older women to be their own advocates. Talk to your doctor every year and reassess what the latest and newest birth controls might be available to them, what their risk factors might be, any side effects that might be occurring, and what their current needs are. Because life changes, and as life changes, the option that would be best suitable for you should also change.”

Regardless of your contraceptive method, know that most don't protect against sexually transmitted infections or HIV. Dr. Shel recommends that in addition to the birth control option women are utilizing, they should consider supplementing with a male condom, as well.

So, are you using the birth control option that's best for you? This is something only you and your doctor can answer, but hopefully the information below will help to better inform you for your next decision. (Click to enlarge.)

Top Photo Credit: Shutterstock