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9 Top Contraception Myths You Should Know

By Expert HERWriter
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9 Top Contraceptive Myths Everyone Should Know vadymvdrobot/Fotolia

Sex is a pastime that so many people engage in. It's so important to know how to have sex without being afraid of getting pregnant. This article focuses on contraception that prevents pregnancy, not sexually transmitted disease.

Here are the top nine myths about contraception that you should know to help you prevent pregnancy.

Myth #1: The withdrawal method prevents pregnancy.

There are secretions that come out of the penis before a man ejaculates, and they can contain sperm. If that pre-ejaculatory fluid gets into the vagina, then the sperm can be on it way to fertilize the egg.

So just because a man doesn't come inside a woman, it doesn't mean that she can’t still get pregnant.

Myth #2: You can't get pregnant when you're breastfeeding.

Ever heard the term "Irish twins?" This refers to babies born to the same mother within a 12-month period of time. It really has nothing to do with being Irish, and for that matter, the babies are not twins. It's just a name that has stuck, for a very real situation that can happen to women of any nationality.

This can happen if the mother didn’t use birth control because she didn't think that she could get pregnant while breastfeeding. A woman can start ovulating even when she is breastfeeding. So contraception should be used even when breastfeeding.

Myth #3: Douching kills the sperm.

While douching can kill sperm, any of the sperm that make it to and through the cervical canal are on their way to fertilize an egg. Douching is not a reliable form of contraception.

Myth #4: The rhythm method will always prevent pregnancy.

It is true that a woman can only become pregnant during ovulation. But ovulation is does not always occur on the same day each month or even every 28 days.

Even the most regular woman can have a change in her hormonal balance from month to month. The rhythm the sensitivity and variability of the hormonal cycles make this a difficult method to track. Couples that use this method have to carefully monitor the menstrual cycle and ovulation symptoms.

Add a Comment4 Comments

The first 6 months after giving birth, I did not have a period. My period came on afterwards, but it was highly irregular. It's only become more regular now, after taking conceiveeasy, but we would not have minded had we been blessed with 'Irish Twins'. We prefer to have kids close in age so that my daughter would have a playmate.

February 2, 2016 - 1:29pm
HERWriter Guide (reply to PatriciaM63)

Hi Patricia

Don't despair! I had what I jokingly call "Irish Triplets"!  All three one year apart.  It's fun and it's difficult and wonderful like all parts of parenting but in retrospect I would have probably spaced them at two years apart each. 

Good luck in conceiving! 

February 5, 2016 - 4:28pm
EmpowHER Guest

I have personal experience with the spacing effects of breastfeeding. With each of my children, I had anywhere between 21-31 months of amenorrhea (no cycling, no ovulation) while breastfeeding. I followed the Seven Standards of Ecological Breastfeeding.

January 31, 2016 - 9:28am

You can get pregnant while breastfeeding. However breastfeeding infertility and natural birth spacing does work with the right kind of breastfeeding. Using nature as the norm, a mother using the Seven Standards of ecological breastfeeding may experience, on average, 14 to 15 months without cycling. In other words, for a nursing mother to go 1 or 2 or 3 years without menstruating is not abnormal. The Seven Standards are merely maternal behaviors associated with breastfeeding infertility. Interested couples can read The Seven Standards of Ecological Breastfeeding, a short, readable and inexpensive book, available at amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc. and as an ebook.

January 31, 2016 - 8:25am
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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