Busting common myths about contraception and sexual health
Does using contraceptives cause problems for conceiving in the future?
No. There is no evidence that suggests any form of non-permanent contraceptive will prevent you from conceiving when you are ready to have a child.
Do contraceptives cause any health problems for mothers?
Contraceptives cause no long-lasting or permanent health problems though some of them have unpleasant side effects like early periods, sore breasts, weight gain and nausea.
If I put my legs up straight after sex, does that stop conception?
No. The only way to stop conception is to use a contraceptive e.g. condoms, the pill etc.
Can I get pregnant from oral sex?
No. Oral sex does not cause pregnancy but it is still possible to catch sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Use contraception like condoms to prevent contraction of an STI.
Can I only get cervical cancer if I have multiple sexual partners?
No. Cervical cancer is caused by the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) which is generally contracted during sex. This can easily happen as a result of sex with your partner. There are over 100 strains of HPV many of which are harmless, but some strains cause changes to cells in your cervix which, if left untreated, can become cancerous. It is important to go for regular checks with your gynaecologist as there are usually no symptoms of cervical cancer at the early stages.
Can he tell if I am taking the pill (or using other contraceptive methods)?
Some contraceptives are visible (like condoms) so your partner will be aware that you are using them. There are contraceptives available that he will not know about unless you tell him e.g. the pill, the coil and the vaginal condom. Using any one of these contraceptives will not ruin the experience of sex for your partner, or for you.
Is using contraception against God’s will?
Taken from wikipedia: The Qur’an does not make any explicit statements about the morality of contraception, but contains statements encouraging procreation. The prophet Muhammad also is reported to have said “marry and procreate”. Coitus interruptus, a primitive form of birth control in which a man, during intercourse, withdraws his penis from a woman’s vagina prior to orgasm in an effort to avoid insemination, was a known practice at the time of Muhammad, and his companions engaged in it. Muhammad knew about this, but did not prohibit it. Umar and Ali, the second and fourth of the Rashidun caliphs, respectively, defended the practice. Muslim scholars have extended the example of coitus interruptus, by analogy, to declaring permissible other forms of contraception, subject to three conditions. As offspring are the right of both the husband and the wife, the birth control method should be used with both parties’ consent. The method should not cause permanent sterility. The method should not otherwise harm the body. Please check http://www.e-infad.my/FMS_en/index.php?option=com_fatwa&task=viewlink&link_id=2074&Itemid=59 for more information.
My periods are irregular. Is this normal?
Some women find that their menstrual cycle isn’t always regular. Their periods may be early or late, and may vary in how long they last or how heavy they are each time. The average menstrual cycle lasts 28 days, but can vary between 24 and 35 days. Menstrual bleeding normally lasts for about five days. This can be disturbed if you change your method of contraception or if you have an imbalance of the reproductive hormones oestrogen and progesterone. Many factors can cause a hormone imbalance, from polycystic ovary syndrome to extreme weight loss and excessive exercise.
When should I see a doctor about my period?
Irregular periods are common during puberty or just before the menopause. Treatment during these times is usually not necessary. But, if your periods are particularly heavy, last a long time or are more frequent than monthly, or if you get bleeding or spotting between periods or after sex, see your Gynaecologist.
Pregnancy tests are easily available from any pharmacy. They work by detecting the presence of the hormone human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), a glycoprotein that is secreted by the placenta shortly after fertilization. This is a simple, non-invasive procedure you can do yourself without anyone knowing