Common complaints that women have when using birth control vary depending on the method used. Side-effects like headaches, acne, skin irritation (at insertion site for sub-dermal implants), thinning hair, bloating, breast tenderness, and weight gain can all be treated with relative ease.
More extreme cases require medical intervention. Women who use implanted devices like the IUD have reported punctures the the uterine wall, devices being lodged in the uterine wall, heavy bleeding, and ovarian cysts. These side effects have led to surgery, infertility, anemia, and even cancer.
There is an elevated risk of infection any time a birth control device must be inserted into the vaginal tract. UTI’s, or urinary tract infections, are more common with diaphragm and sponge use. Though uncomfortable and inconvenient, UTI’s are treatable with prescription medications and/or natural remedies.
The NuvaRing, however, is a whole other story. Blood clots are the most serious side-effect which can lead to heart attacks, strokes, Toxic Shock Syndrome, liver problems (including tumors), high blood pressure, and more.
With the exception of condoms, none of the other products on the market prevent the spread of sexually transmitted diseases nor do they prevent the spread of HIV. If diseases like syphilis are left untreated, irreversible damage to the brain, eyes, heart, or nerves may develop. Babies may contract the disease during childbirth. Because the symptoms are usually undetected, serious health problems may develop up to and including death.
Ailments like herpes have no cure. Other untreated diseases can cause infertility. But if you contract HIV, then death is imminent. Your quality of life with HIV will be dictated by how clean your lifestyle is and how accessible treatments and medications are to you.
Pretty heavy stuff, isn’t it? Well, it is better to have given all of these matters some thought lest you find yourself at your doctor’s office wishing you had been more mindful. Your health is serious business. Make it a priority. Your future depends on it.