Q: What happens in the Doctor's office during contraception counseling?

A: During the doctor’s visit for birth control, the doctor will first get a history and discuss with you the best method for birth control. Besides the pill there are other methods including an IUD, condoms, cervical caps, sterilization.

The doctor will also usually do a Pap smear and check to see if you have any sexually transmitted diseases or other diseases which need to be treated.

In addition, the doctor will try finding out whether there are any reasons (contraindications) why you would not be a candidate for certain birth control methods like the pill and which would be best for you.

Contraindications for birth control pills include high blood pressure and smoking, a history of blood clots, certain liver diseases and certain forms of headaches.

The doctor will then explain to you the benefits and potential risks for each of your contraception methods and options as well as give you instructions of how effective it is:

  • Birth control pill
  • Birth control implant
  • Birth control shot
  • Birth control vaginal ring
  • Birth control patch
  • IUD
  • Condoms
  • Spermicide
  • Birth control sponge
  • Cervical cap
  • Fertility awareness method
  • Sterilization (woman)
  • Vasectomy (man)