Introduction to Contraception
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The Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada (SOGC) recognizes family planning as an important aspect of life and a basic human right.Yet there are many barriers to accessing an appropriate method of contraception and using it consistently and correctly, particularly for individuals with low incomes and low levels of literacy.
The Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada (SOGC) recognizes family planning as an important aspect of life and a basic human right.Yet there are many barriers to accessing an appropriate method of contraception and using it consistently and correctly, particularly for individuals with low incomes and low levels of literacy.One study found that 8 of 14 condom package inserts required a level of literacy consistent with high school completion.Another study found that 75% of patients needed help in understanding the package inserts in oral contraceptives.
What's so different about research on contraceptives? They're just like other drugs or devices. Aren't they?
Contraceptives `re not just "drugs" hey do not treat a state of 'illness' They are taken by people who may otherwise be healthy- though the user's state of health is a major consideration both in research and otherwise.
Contraceptives are used because most people, especially women, need them badly enough to interfere with their normal bodily processes - a need which would force many people to accept whatever is available.
Contraceptives are used over a long period of time on a continuous basis. Any interference with the body's normal functioning will occur for an extended period - something to be remembered when determining the safety and harmlessness of a method.
Contraceptives obviously affect the reproductive cycle, and could possibly affect the next generation. Most important , contraceptives satisfy a social , not medical need.
Contraceptive research should be seen in the context of the growing "technologising" of health care, the medicalising of disease diagnosis and treatment, an increasingly market-governed process, controlled by the pharmaceutical industry.
Contraceptive research gets justification from the population control lobby. This lobby directs the research, its language dominates in both the popular press and research setting, and it justifies the introduction of potentially risky methods. The other, more sophisticated justification for introducing potentially risky contraceptives is that they reduce maternal mortality by preventing pregnancy itself.
However, 'population control' actually means control of certain populations. By now we know it to be racist and anti-poor. Its implementation is also associated with anti-semen attitudes. Women are considered for reproduction, as they are for exercising control over this process. Contraceptive research follows the same line of thinking, even if it is at the cost of women's health.
Contraception allows you to choose when and if you want to have a baby. Some forms of contraception also provide protection against sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
There are several types of contraception, which work in different ways. Barrier methods, such as male and female condoms, create a physical barrier against sperm. Women can also use hormonal methods of contraception, such as the pill, or mechanical contraceptive devices, such as an IUD (intrauterine device) that is placed in the womb.
Before recommending a contraceptive, your GP will assess your age, medical history, and sexual lifestyle. No contraceptive is 100% reliable, and some have possible side effects. It is therefore important to consider these factors when deciding what sort of protection to use.
Condoms are available for free from your family planning clinic, sexual health clinic, or lxtt GUM (genitourinary medicine) clinic. They may also be available from your GP. Emergency contraception is also available from your GP, family planning clinics, most NHS walk-in centres (England only) and some pharmacies. You can buy male and female condoms from chemists, as well as from vending machines, supermarkets, garages and other shops.
You may need to change your contraception as you get older, after having children, or if your sexual lifestyle changes. It is worth remembering that the male condom is the only form of contraception that also protects you from sexually transmitted diseases. In all cases, contraceptive methods are more reliable if used properly.
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