Birth Control

You may want to enjoy your sex life without worrying about an unintended pregnancy. If so, birth control is an excellent option for you.

In the United States, 99% of sexually experienced women aged 15 to 44 have used one or more forms of contraception.¹ Birth control is common and available in many forms. With Cue, you can easily access the contraception you need to prevent pregnancy.

Birth control is a set of medicines, methods, or devices primarily used to prevent pregnancy. With Cue, it's easy to get access to the contraceptives you need to prevent pregnancy.

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What is Birth Control?

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What is Birth Control?

Birth control — also known as contraception — is a set of medicines, methods, or devices primarily used to prevent pregnancy. Contraceptives can be hormonal or non-hormonal. Certain forms of hormonal birth control may help shorten and lighten periods, reduce menstrual cramps, lessen acne, and relieve painful symptoms of reproductive conditions, such as endometriosis and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). 

Most hormonal contraceptives release synthetic hormones — such as ethinyl estradiol or progestin — that affect the female sex hormones estrogen and progesterone. The synthetic hormones typically work by delaying or preventing ovulation. Some might also thicken cervical mucus to keep sperm from reaching an egg or change the uterine lining to keep fertilized eggs from implanting. 

  • Side Effects

    Most women use birth control without any issues. However, hormonal birth control can cause side effects, including:
    • Changes in menstrual cycle and spotting or bleeding between periods
    • Nausea
    • Headaches 
    • Sore breasts

    Some people also attribute mood swings and weight gain to certain hormonal birth control methods. Fortunately, most of these common side effects tend to go away after 2 to 3 months.

    Combination birth control pills and some other forms of hormonal birth control, such as the vaginal ring and skin patch, may raise your risk for blood clots and high blood pressure, which can lead to heart attack, stroke, or debilitating blood clots in the legs or lungs. The risk is higher in smokers and women older than 35. These are serious side effects, but they are rare.

    Other birth control methods, such as IUDs and injections, can cause abdominal or pelvic discomfort or pain. IUDs and progestin-only pills may also slightly increase the risk of ectopic pregnancy. The risk of ectopic pregnancy is low, however, because these methods are so effective at preventing pregnancy. 

    If you want to prevent pregnancy, seek out an assessment and a birth control method. The right birth control can give you peace of mind and possibly relieve painful symptoms related to your menstrual cycle.

  • Who It Affects

    About 65% of women aged 15–49 report currently using some form of birth control.² Combined hormonal contraceptives have the potential to be 99% effective if you use them correctly. However, most people don’t use them correctly, so the actual effectiveness is around 91%.³ If you occasionally forget to take your birth control pill or to get an injection on time, effectiveness can be reduced further.

    A wide variety of birth control is available to anybody who needs it.

  • What Treatment Looks Like

    There are several types of hormonal birth control:
    • Birth control pills: Oral hormonal contraceptives in the form of a pill, taken daily (or in some cases, for 21 days followed by 7 days of no pills or inactive pills). They can be combination pills (pills with both estrogen and progestin) or progestin-only pills.
    • Birth control patch: A small, thin patch worn on the skin weekly.
    • Vaginal ring: A soft, flexible plastic ring inserted into the vagina by the woman every 3 weeks.
    • Intrauterine Device (IUD): A T-shaped device inserted into the uterus by a healthcare professional. May or may not include progestin. Depending on the type, lasts 3 years to 10 years.
    • Contraceptive implant: A small rod inserted under the skin by a healthcare professional. Lasts up to 3 years.
    • Contraceptive injection: A hormone injection given by a healthcare professional every few months.

    Non-hormonal birth control options are good for women who recently had a baby, have contraindications for hormonal birth control, or don't respond well to hormonal birth control. Non-hormonal birth control methods include:
    • Diaphragm or cervical cap: A barrier device filled with spermicide and placed inside the vagina to cover the cervix and prevent sperm from entering the uterus. Must be used during every sexual encounter.
    • Condoms: A barrier device made of latex or polyurethane that prevents sperm from entering the uterus when used correctly. Male condoms cover the penis, and female condoms line the vagina. For single use; must be used during every sexual encounter.
    • Fertility awareness: A natural method of contraception that uses rhythm and temperature to determine when a woman is fertile.

  • How Cue Can Help You Find Relief

    If you want to avoid pregnancy or are experiencing painful reproductive disorder symptoms, you're not alone. It can be difficult to monitor your cycle or find relief. Complicating matters further, many effective birth control methods, including birth control pills, are only available with a prescription.

    Cue makes it easy to purchase your birth control online from the comfort of home. Connect with a healthcare expert to get your medication approved and delivered right to your door, all through the Cue Health App. It’s convenient, easy, and discreet.

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