Image Caption : Female Pelvis Showing Contraceptive Ring within Vagina: Three-dimensional visualization reconstructed from scanned human data. Anterior view of female pelvis and reproductive organs, showing proper placement of a contraceptive ring within the vagina. A contraceptive ring is a female hormonal contraceptive device that is inserted into the vagina; it releases hormones that stop the ovary from releasing an egg, so that pregnancy does not occur. It also causes the cervical mucous to thicken, making it more difficult for sperm to enter the uterus, and changes the lining of the uterus, preventing implantation of a fertilized egg. The contraceptive ring is only available with a prescription. When used correctly, it has a failure rate of 1 - 2%. It offers no protection against STDs.
Also called: Contraception
Birth control, also known as contraception, is designed to prevent pregnancy. Birth control methods may work in a number of different ways. These include
- Preventing sperm from getting to the eggs - condoms, diaphragms and intrauterine devices (IUDs) work this way
- Keeping the woman's ovaries from releasing eggs that could be fertilized - birth control pills work this way
- Sterilization, which permanently prevents a woman from getting pregnant or a man from being able to get a woman pregnant
Your choice of birth control should depend on several factors. These include your health, frequency of sexual activity, number of sexual partners and desire to have children in the future. Your health care provider can help you select the best form of birth control for you.
NIH: National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
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