Permanent birth control
Permanent birth control isn’t a decision to make while you’re hopped up on postpartum hormones, but it’s a good, safe option when you and your partner decide that your family is complete. Plus, it won’t affect your hormones, lactation, libido or mood like other contraception methods. If you’re planning on having your tubes tied right after delivery, make sure you sign a consent form well before the delivery in case your doctor insists on a waiting period.
After watching you recuperate from a year-long process of carrying and birthing his baby, some men will step up to the plate and offer to be sterilised, while others, understandably, turn pale at the mere thought. A woman’s tubal litigations used to be much more invasive than they are now, so men shouldn’t feel guilty for being apprehensive about the procedure. If he decides to go through with a vasectomy, the doctor will snip the two tubes that transport sperm to the semen in a quick, simple procedure. He will still be able to have an erection and ejaculate, but there won’t be any sperm in his semen. One major reason to opt for a vasectomy over the tubal litigation is the option of reversal (which has a higher success rate than a tubal litigation reversal) and fewer side effects and risks.
If you didn’t have this done after your delivery, this is generally a safe time to consider having the procedure done (four to six weeks postpartum). It’s much less invasive than the major abdominal surgery that used to be required. Now, the doctor will make a small cut below the belly button to cut, tie or block the fallopian tubes. There’s a very small chance that an egg can slip through after the surgery is done, which would put you at an increased risk for an ectopic pregnancy. A tubal ligation technically can be reversed, but the odds of it actually working don’t always warrant the cost and medical procedure.
The newest addition to the permanent birth control spectrum is Essure, which is a female sterilisation that requires no incisions or anesthesia. A tube is inserted into your cervix that implants a small, flexible insert into each fallopian tube. Tissue will grow inside of the insert over the next three months, blocking the tubes without any kind of surgery. Essure claims to be the most effective form of permanent birth control, but it’s absolutely not reversible - so there’s no going back. If you choose this option, you’ll have to use another method of birth control until the doctor can confirm that the procedure worked.
Signs of ovulation
Monitoring your ovulation
This article was written by Linda Drummond for Kidspot, New Zealand's leading pregnancy and parenting resource with additional information from Family Planning Victoria.