“Natural family planning” is any method of fertility management that uses natural methods to determine the time of the month when a woman is most fertile. These methods help a woman to learn and recognize the changes to her body around her fertile time, and make decisions about having sex in accordance with if she is trying to postpone or achieve pregnancy. As with any birth control method, there are things about it that you may feel are advantages or disadvantages to you personally. Below are some things about natural family planning methods to keep in mind.
- You do not need a prescription or assistance from a health care provider to use natural family planning.
- These methods do not involve using physical barriers or chemicals, and therefore you will have no allergic reactions or side effects to worry about.
- When you decide you are ready to conceive, you can easily switch your focus from having intercourse on infertile days, to having intercourse on those days most likely to result in pregnancy.
- Couples are most successful using natural family planning when they are both fully committed to the method. This can help build trust and intimacy in your relationship.
- It may take a few menstrual cycles before you can be fully confident that you know exactly when your fertile time is.
- All forms of natural family planning require you to keep some form of daily record of your fertility signs, such as your body temperature or the consistency of your cervical mucus.
- Natural family planning can be up to 99% effective with perfect use.
- Natural family planning makes you more in tune with your body, and therefore more likely to recognize signs of illness. For example, if you are checking your vaginal secretions daily, you would notice right away if you were showing signs of a yeast infection.
- If you are not trying to become pregnant and do not wish to use barrier forms of contraception, you will need to abstain from sex during your fertile days.