Us women like to inform themselves, to our best knowledge, about our bodies and what affects them. But do we know everything about contraception?
As a woman, you are educated about sex at a relatively early age. This includes any sexually transmitted diseases, but also the risks of pregnancy.
By puberty (at the latest), it becomes clear to us that the issue of contraception largely sticks to us women, and we are the ones put in the position to avoid becoming pregnant (yes, men use condoms, but are there items such as condoms for women? Just a “quick fix”?). The pill, hormonal patch, coil or ring: we have to protect ourselves from unwanted pregnancies. Through this, we pump ourselves full of hormones for years.
How lightly and naturally we take the “responsibility pill” and why stopping it was the best decision of my life, you can read in this article.
Since hormones cannot and should not be used for life, it is time to consider what options we have left. “Back to the roots” is the name of the trend. Women have used natural contraception for millennia. Coupled with today’s knowledge of the female anatomy, there are natural contraceptive methods that work well and are harmless to our health and psyche.
Persona and other hormone-measuring contraceptive computers
Contraceptive computers measure estrogen and the luteinizing hormone, which is responsible for ovulation. For this method of contraception, it is important that the cycle is between 23 and 35 days long. In the first cycle, the computer gets to know you through 16 tests, but from the second cycle you only have to test 8 times a month. The whole thing works through the morning urine. The computer shows you the days on which tests have to be carried out. Green means unprotected traffic is possible, red means it is a fertile day. These computers are very reliable for a natural method of contraception, the Pearl Index is 6. The Pearl Index shows how many out of 100 women get pregnant with this method of contraception in the course of a year. For comparison: condoms have a Pearl Index between 8 and 18, although a lot is due to incorrect use.
Basal temperature as a body signal
During the menstrual cycle there are various ovulation symptoms that are related to the hormonal changes within a menstrual cycle. One of these symptoms is the so-called basal temperature, which is also called the wake-up temperature. Measurements are taken after waking up and before getting up. The temperature gives us important information about our current fertility status.
The hormone progesterone is formed in the second half of the cycle after ovulation has taken place. This hormone acts on the body’s heat regulation and increases its temperature. This method requires discipline, as measurements must always be carried out at the same time. Jet lag, shift work or regular excessive consumption of alcohol falsify the result. The good thing: If we know when we are ovulating, we can relax and have unprotected sex during the time afterwards. Pearl index: 3.8 -20.
This method requires a willingness to pay attention to one’s body signals on a daily basis. Apart from the reliability of this method when used consistently, I also think it’s great because you really get to know your body. We may have had our bodies for 20 or 50 years, but very few people know what happens down there and why.
The symptothermal method combines different methods to create a very reliable, natural method of contraception with a Pearl Index of 0.4-2.6, which is a fantastic value for a natural method of contraception.
In addition to the temperature measurement method, the symptothermal method also combines the Billings method. The second deals with the cervix and the cervical mucus. After the menstrual period, the cervix is tighter. It becomes wider and softer towards ovulation. You can easily feel the mouth with one finger. The mucus in the vagina also changes towards ovulation. Shortly after the start of your period it is hardly present and becomes more and more fluid and spinnable by the time you ovulate.
As you probably know by now, I am a big advocate of natural treatment and contraception wherever possible. We shouldn’t expect our bodies to do more than we have to. For over 3 years I have been using the billings method and monitoring, feel my ovulation and keep records of my cycle. What is exhausting at the beginning quickly becomes routine.
Translated by: Cheyenne Müller