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How To Have Sex Without Worries
If you are sexually active, then you need to learn how to take a decision on when to get pregnant. Gone are the days when unplanned/unwanted pregnancy should frequently occur in Nigeria, yet this is not the case because among sexually active Nigerian women (both single & married), 1 in 7 have tried to have an abortion contributing to Nigeria having one of the highest maternal mortality rates (death of pregnant women) in the world. Many of you who want to know about contraception are scared off by a lot of inaccurate gist and a lot of ‘they said, she said, I heard’ (Read some questions young women ask about sex here).
Also, you might have been told by your friend that using antibiotics such as Ampiclox (ampicillin +cloxacillin) by Beecham can prevent pregnancy. Please take my word as a professional that Ampiclox cannot prevent pregnancy and what you’re doing is drug abuse; ampiclox cannot kill sperm or prevent or stop an existing pregnancy.
So what are Contraceptives? These are drugs or medical devices used to prevent pregnancy (ie. conception). Contraceptives can be either temporary or permanent; I know that most people want temporary (reversible) contraception, so let's discuss those. Most contraceptives contain hormones, while a few do not. The Hormonal Methods contain drugs that look like one or two of your natural female reproductive hormones called progesterone and oestrogen and are about 99%effective. These methods include:
1. Oral contraceptive pills: There are two types, the combined oral contraceptives which is a daily pill containing two low dose hormones, one estrogen and one progestogen. A brand I would recommend is Levofem. There is also the progestogen only contraceptives called the mini-pill which is also taken daily but contains only one low dose hormone and works best if you're breastfeeding a baby.
2. Contraceptive Injections: Did you know that there are injections which can be used to prevent pregnancy for 1, 2 or 3 months? These injections contain one progestogen hormone but I quite prefer the three month option, as it means you will only take 4 injections in a year. You can ask your health provider for the one called Sayana Press because the needle is very small, so it’s less painful and the dose of the hormone is lower than in any other 3-month contraceptive injection.
Contraceptive Injections like Sayana Press are convenient and good for women who forget to take their contraceptive pills daily. It is also good for women who because of their health status, should not take medicines that contain oestrogen (eg. women breastfeeding babies younger than 6 months or women at risk of thromboembolism (blood clot in the veins). This injection is affordable and you can quickly stop worrying about pregnancy for the next 3 months.
3. Contraceptive Implant: This is a tiny flexible rod (smaller and thinner than a matchstick) that is inserted under the skin of your upper arm by a health professional and contains a progestogen hormone which is released slowly into your body system. This implant can work for 3-5 years, but you can ask your health provider to remove it for you anytime you are ready to get pregnant even you have used it for just one year.
On the other hand, you may decide that you do not want any benefits from using hormones, or your health provider may decide for you, because your health status will not permit you to use such. There are two types of contraceptives you can get in Nigeria that don’t have hormones, they are:
1. Condoms-Condoms are a popular method and come in many different types colours, textures and flavours, so that you can have fun by trying a different type every time you have sex. Remember, condoms are the only contraceptives that can prevent both pregnancy and STIs.
2. Intra-Uterine Devices (IUDs): IUD is a small device that does not contain hormones and is placed inside your womb by a specially trained doctor to prevent pregnancy. This method is very effective and safe for many women and starts working immediately it is inserted and also stops working once it is removed. So visit your clinic today to find our more.
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4/ 5Oleh Indira Tanisyah