Babies are a true blessing and are wonderful bundles of joy. It is amazing how life can be created amongst two people. However, for those who were not ready for a child, either financially or emotionally, an unplanned pregnancy may feel like a hinderance to their purpose in life. Birth control is the act of taking cautious measures to not get pregnant. Traditionally, birth control was designed to prevent pregnancy, however over the years, it has also been used for other purposes. Birth control has both positive and negative effects for women. It can allow a woman the ability to plan a pregnancy and prevent unwanted pregnancies, it can be used for reasons other than pregnancy prevention but may also cause harmful health risks.
Birth control gives a woman the choice to decide when she is ready for a baby. Sometimes a woman may want to hold off on having a baby because of a health issue. For example, back to back pregnancies can be detrimental to the physical and emotional heath of a woman. Birth control can allow time for a woman’s body to return to its normal state. Birth control has been around for centuries. Before medical birth control, women practiced birth control with behavior. Woman would abstain from sex to avoid pregnancy. Abstinence was and still is the safest and most effective form of birth control. However, with modern technology there are more methods available for women to choose from like medications, procedures, and devices. Woman are more than wives to be, wives, or mothers. Women are equal to men in work environments. Because of this equality, women do not have to stress or worry about an accidental pregnancy if she takes preventive measure like birth control. Whether if her choice is to focus on pursuing an education, career, or a personal journey, birth control gives a woman the freedom to make decision that possible could affect her life. A woman can live a lifestyle with choices. Not saying that woman that do not take birth control or woman that have children do not have choices. It is believed that birth control lowers abortions rates. Birth control can also be used as emergency contraception. Emergency contraception, also known as the morning after pill, is a birth control pill that can be taken twenty-four to seventy- two hours after unprotected sex and helps aid with preventing a pregnancy.
Birth control can be used for reasons other than pregnancy prevention. Birth control can promote regularity of a woman’s menstruation. Some woman do not have regular cycles and worry about their period coming at the least expected time. Woman do not want to have to worry about getting their period while out at a public place. That would be embarrassing and stressful. It can also help with the volume of the flow. Woman who suffer from heavy menses would benefit in lowering their bleeding. This advantage reduces the risk of anemia. Birth control can help clear skin conditions like acne. These birth control methods contain progestin, norgestimate or desogestrel which all treat acne. It can help with menstrual cramps; painful, involuntary contractions of muscles in the abdomen. Certain birth control medications contain hormones that can stabilize those contractions. Birth control can also help with menstrual migraines. Menstrual migraines are linked to the decrease of estrogen and progesterone. Taking extended-cycle birth control, releases these two hormones and helps increase them. The Studies show that BCP users have about a 50% decrease in the risk of ovarian cancer and a 30 to 40% reduction in the risks of uterine and colon cancer. (Even women who carry a familial gene for ovarian cancer have been shown to benefit from the use of BCPs.) The longer you’re on the Pill, the greater the protection, and the benefits seem to last for years after you stop taking them, Minkin, M. J., ; Hanlon, T. (1999).
Although there are advantages in using birth control, there also are disadvantages. Birth control may cause different health issues. According to the FDA, the following problems have been linked to birth control drugs: heart arrhythmias, stoke, blood clots, gallbladder problems, electrolyte imbalance, embolisms, and sudden death. Currently there are twenty-three civil lawsuits against Bayer, the pharmaceutical company that manufactured Yaz (a birth control pill). In those lawsuits, the women claimed that Yaz caused or contributed to their health problems. Birth control can cause weight gain. It is possible a woman may uncontrollably gain weight while on birth control. If a woman is attempting to maintain her weight or lose weight, this will create a problem for her. Infertility is another serious risk with certain birth control methods. Devices such as an IUD, intra-uterine device, a tiny device that is inserted into the uterus to prevent pregnancy has been linked to PID, pelvic inflammatory disease. PID can cause permanent scarring on the tissue of the female reproductive organs. The scarred tissue will then cause blockage which will cause sperm to never meet an egg. Furthermore, it has been proven that the use of birth control has increased the risk for contracting a sexually transmitted disease, and it can also make a woman more susceptible to vaginal infections and increase the likeness of cancer. Pelton presents numerous scientific studies which document the fact that oral contraceptives deplete a wide range of nutrients. These nutrient depletions substantially increase women’s risks of health issues such as depression, sleep problems, anemia/fatigue/low energy, accelerated plaque build-up, blood clots, osteoporosis, heart attacks, a weakened immune system, giving birth to an infant with birth defects, a wide range of sexual problems, and increased free-radical damage, which accelerates aging, Khaleghi, M. (2013).
Birth control is practiced globally and overall has both positive and negative effects for women. A woman must be aware of the benefits and potential risks associated with birth control. She must be the one to ultimately make the decision whether or not to be on birth control and if so, she must also decide which would benefit her the most. Birth control allow a woman the ability to plan a pregnancy, prevent unwanted pregnancies, but may also cause health risks.

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