Are you ready for a more permanent contraceptive option that doesn’t require interrupting the heat of the moment to apply a condom or sponge? Tired of trying to remember whether or not you took the pill this morning? You can kiss those entire methods goodbye when you opt for permanent contraception options. Once you’re sure you are done having children, make an appointment with your OB/GYN to discuss your permanent sterilization options. Please note that permanent means reversal may not be an option. Make sure you are 100% committed to your decision.
The following are your options for permanent sterilization.
Hyesteroscopic Sterilization. This is the only non-surgical permanent contraception method. For this procedure, the doctor will use a scope to insert a small coil into the ends of each of your fallopian tubes. The scope passes through your vagina and cervix, so no incision is necessary. Most patients are out of the office within 45-minutes and can return to their normal activities within a day. At Overlake OBGYN, we use Essure, and have been pleased with satisfied patient feedback. Over the course of three months, the device works with your body to permanently block the opening of the fallopian tubes, which prevents eggs from being fertilized by sperm. The tubal closure takes about three full months to finalize, during which time you much use another form of birth control.
Tubal ligation. This procedure is often referred to as having one’s tubes tied, due to the “ties” or clamps that are applied to the fallopian tubes. This is a surgical procedure and will require a small incision, usually created through, or right underneath, the navel. The doctor uses the incision to find and reach the fallopian tubes. Each of these tubes will be clamped off, cut and tied, or cauterized, depending on the procedure preferred by your doctor. A tubal ligation takes about 10 to 45 minutes from start to finish. Most women can return to their normal activities within a couple of days, but it depends on your personal pain tolerance and ability to heal.
Vasectomy. For this procedure, the woman is off the hook. Vasectomies are typically performed by a general practitioner or a urologist and is a surgical procedure performed under local anesthetic. The surgeon will create two small incisions on the scrotum. This provides access to the tubes that carry semen from the testicles to the urethra, called the vas deferens. The vas deferens will be cut and closed off, which keeps the sperm from making their way into the urethra. There will be tenderness and bruising around the incision site for a few days. Couples are advised to use birth control for at least the first 20 ejaculations or until the doctor has determined the semen is sperm-free. Vasectomies do not hinder erections or ejaculation in any way.
While each of these methods provide permanent sterilization, they do not prevent STDs. If you will be having sex with more than one partner, or are having sex with someone who has multiple partners, you should always use a condom.
Never make an appointment to undergo permanent sterilization procedures if:
· You are post-partum. Let those hormones adjust and wait at least a couple of years so you don’t decide while under the duress of new parenting.
· You’ve re cently divorced or are having marital issues. Use temporary contraception until you have moved through dramatic life changes or emotional trauma to minimize the chances of regret.
· You are young. Many women who feel they will never want children are shocked when their maternal instincts kick in later in life. Wait until you are older and have a life partner before making a permanent decision about your reproductive options.
Interested in learning more about your permanent contraception options? Contact Overlake OBGYN and schedule an appointment.