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Natural Method of Birth Control: Quick Facts for Couples

Natural Method of Birth Control: Quick Facts for Couples

The natural method of birth control still remains a popular form of contraception for a lot of couples. One of the reasons is that it’s free, and for those with religious restrictions, it is the only option that they have.

But before you and your partner try out this method, there are 5 quick facts that you need to know about it.

Natural Method of Birth Control: 5 Quick Facts

Natural birth control, also known as the rhythm method, involves knowing when the woman is most fertile. This is done by tracking the menstrual and ovulation cycle, and avoiding sexual intercourse during the most fertile days.

Here’s what you need to know:

It can be more involved compared to other methods

Compared to taking a birth control pill or using a condom, the rhythm method can be more involved. This is because couples need to track not just the menstrual, but also the ovulation cycle. To make it more accurate, the woman’s body temperature also needs to be checked, as well as her cervical secretions.

The reason behind this is that the woman’s body temperature and cervical secretions change when she is at her most fertile. Keeping all of these things in mind can feel overwhelming, especially for busy couples.

However, the natural method is free, and once you get the hang of it, it can be fairly effective.

There are no side effects to this method

One of the reasons why some women don’t take birth control pills is that they can experience a lot of side effects. Some women develop acne, experience low sex drive, or even suffer from mood swings when taking contraceptive pills.

As for condoms, some men dislike using one, since they feel that it’s not as sensitive as sex without a condom. It’s also possible for some women to have a latex allergy, which means that sex with a condom is a big no-no.

But for the natural method, there are no side effects since it involves tracking fertility and avoiding sex during the most fertile days.

The natural method has some limitations

Despite the benefits of this method, there are some limitations. First, if the woman’s menstrual cycle is irregular, then it will be difficult to track the ovulation cycle.

Another limitation is that this method relies on knowing exactly when the woman is ovulating. Since this can’t be 100% confirmed without a blood test, there is a chance that couples might be tracking the wrong dates.

Lastly, compared to other forms of birth control, the natural method is the least effective. This means that there is a chance that couples can still conceive a baby, especially if they are off by a few days.

It’s not for everyone

Not everyone would be fine with this form of birth control. Couples who do not want any children should avoid this method since its the least effective form of birth control.

Women who have irregular periods, or have conditions such as PCOS might find it very hard to track their cycles, so it won’t be very accurate. Other factors such as stress, and medication can also disrupt a woman’s periods.

Couples might find it difficult to abstain from sex for extended periods of time, depending on the woman’s cycle.

It is the least effective form of birth control

As has been said above, the natural method is the least effective form of birth control. It is estimated to be about 76% of the time. Condoms are about 98% effective when used properly, while pills are 99.7% effective.

This means that couples using the natural method should remember that any time they have sex, there is a higher chance that they could conceive.

Learn more about Contraception here.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

  1. Natural family planning (fertility awareness) – NHS, https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/contraception/natural-family-planning/, Accessed December 3, 2021
  2. Fertility Awareness Methods | Natural Birth Control, https://www.plannedparenthood.org/learn/birth-control/fertility-awareness, Accessed December 3, 2021
  3. Natural Family Planning – American Family Physician, https://www.aafp.org/afp/2012/1115/p924.html, Accessed December 3, 2021
  4. Rhythm method for natural family planning – Mayo Clinic, https://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/rhythm-method/about/pac-20390918, Accessed December 3, 2021
  5. Rhythm Method, https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/treatments/17900-rhythm-method, Accessed December 3, 2021
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Written by Jan Alwyn Batara Updated Dec 06, 2021
Fact Checked by Kristel Lagorza