Did you know there are 15 methods of contraception? According to a recent survey, 75 per cent of people would answer ‘no’ to that question.
Despite the many options, twenty five per cent of women use the contraceptive pill, and in the under 18 age bracket that rises to one third.
Interestingly, a recent survey among men showed that nine in every ten would NOT take a male contraceptive pill if it were available – citing concerns over long term effects.
Nine in every ten men would NOT take a male contraceptive pill if it were available
A vast number of the contraceptive methods we use are hormonal. As a result – they affect us psychologically and physiologically.
Search ‘Microgynon [or the name of any other hormonal birth control pill] side effects‘ and you’ll find reams of forum entries created by women suffering from side effects: nausea, mood swings, bloating, and loss of libido. It has also been linked to blood clots, an increased risk of breast cancer and can increase blood pressure.
For active women, there are still more concerns.When we spoke to Dr Stacy Sims, of Osmo nutrition, she explained that the hormonal contraceptive pill raises levels of oestrogen and progestogen by 6-8 times. This decreases the ability to reach high intensities, and increases body temperature, and recovery time.
Of course, most of us are not elite athletes and would rather be 5 per cent less efficient than have an unplanned pregnancy, but few of us like to think of our moods and emotions being drastically affected by synthetic hormones.
The pill works for many women – but it’s not the only option, and some people argue it is oversubscribed by an overworked NHS – as this rather hilarious poem explains:
Here’s a look at the options available, with a close eye on the effect each one has on a woman with a very active, cyclist’s lifestyle…