About the Birth Control Shot
Talking to your kids about sex can be daunting, no matter how close you are. But discussing issues like abstinence, sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), and birth control can help lower teens' risk of an unintended pregnancy or contracting an STD.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) supports sex education that includes information about both abstinence and birth control. Research has shown that this information doesn't increase kids' level of sexual activity, but actually promotes and increases the proper use of birth control methods among sexually active teens.
How and when you discuss sex and birth control is up to you. Providing the facts is vital, but it's also wise to tell your kids where you stand. Remember, by approaching these issues like any other health topics, not as something dirty or embarrassing, you increase the odds that your kids will feel comfortable coming to you with any questions and problems. As awkward as it might feel, answer questions honestly. And if you don't know the answers, it's OK to say so, then find out and report back.
If you have questions about how to talk with your son or daughter about sex, consider consulting your doctor. Lots of parents find this tough to tackle, and a doctor may offer some helpful perspective.
What Is the Birth Control Shot?
The birth control shot is a long-acting form of progesterone, a hormone that is naturally manufactured in the ovaries. The shot is given as an injection in the upper arm or in the buttocks once every 3 months to protect a female from becoming pregnant.
How Does the Birth Control Shot Work?
The hormone progesterone in the birth control shot primarily works by preventing ovulation (the release of an egg during the monthly cycle). If a female doesn't ovulate, she cannot get pregnant because there is no egg to be fertilized.
How Well Does the Birth Control Shot Work?
The birth control shot is a very effective method of birth control. Over the course of a year, fewer than 3 out of 100 typical couples who use the birth control shot every 3 months will have an accidental pregnancy. The chance of getting pregnant increases if a girl waits longer than 3 months to receive her next shot.
In general, how well each type of birth control method works depends on a lot of things. These include whether a person has any health conditions or is taking any medications that might interfere with its use. It also depends on whether the method chosen is convenient and whether the person remembers to use it correctly all of the time.
Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.
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