Birth Control and Trying to Conceive
For many women, the very first step in their journey to try to conceive is to stop using birth control. If you’re using condoms, spermicides, a diaphragm or any other form of hormone-free birth control, you can—and it is safe to—get pregnant as soon as you stop.
If you use any hormone-based birth control methods, which offer protection from pregnancy by preventing ovulation, you should talk to your doctor before you begin trying to conceive.
Here is an explanation of what it takes to conceive after using many common forms of birth control.
Oral Contraceptives (The Pill) – Most oral contraceptives (and there are many on the market!) contain estrogen and progesterone to prevent ovulation. Some women can get pregnant right away after going off the Pill. For others, it may take as long as three months for their menstrual cycle to return to normal. Fertility rates for former Pill users are about the same as the national average; 90 percent of all women get pregnant within one year of coming off the Pill. Most doctors recommend waiting one or two cycles before trying to conceive after you come off the Pill, because of a very small risk of birth defects if the hormones are still in your system.
According to NuvaRing, there is no need to wait one cycle before TTC with this hormone-based, insert-able ring. A clinical study indicated that most women’s cycles return to normal quickly, with ovulation occurring within 13 to 28 days after the ring is removed.
Mirena and other IUDs – This intrauterine contraceptive (IUC) is estrogen-free and, as with any IUD, you can begin trying to conceive immediately after its removal. Your fertility should return fairly quickly.
Permanent Birth Control
Tubal Ligation (Tubes Tied) – This is the most “permanent” of any birth control method for women and is not easily reversed. Chances of a successful reversal range from 20 to 70 percent, depending on the type of tubal ligation and the health of your fallopian tubes.
A tubal ligation reversal is major surgery, where the surgeon rejoins the remaining sections of the fallopian tubes. If both fallopian tubes are at least four inches long and are equal in diameter, the chances of a successful reversal are higher. IVF, or in vitro fertilization, is another option for women who want to get pregnant after having their tubes tied.
Vasectomy – The success rate of a vasectomy reversal for your partner is even lower than tubal ligation reversal. You’ll only want to consider permanent forms of birth control if you both feel fairly certain you do not want to conceive any more children.
Author: Dawn Allcot
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