Birth Control Specialist

Rudolf Novak, MD, FRCSC, ARDMS -  - OB/GYN

Rudolf Novak, MD, FRCSC, ARDMS

OB/GYN located in Thunder Bay, ON

The number of birth control methods available is reassuring yet confusing. Dr. Rudolf Novak’s expert advice helps you narrow down your options at his practice in Thunder Bay, Ontario. To begin exploring the safest, most effective birth control methods available -- including intrauterine contraceptive devices -- and avoid pregnancy, ask your provider to refer you to Dr. Novak for a consultation.

Birth Control Q & A

What types of birth control are available?

Birth control comes in a variety of forms, hormonal and nonhormonal, temporary and permanent. Birth control falls into one of four categories:

  • Barrier
  • Hormonal
  • Behavioral
  • Permanent

Barrier

Birth control devices that form a physical barrier between the sperm and egg are considered barrier methods. Examples of barrier birth control include:

  • Condoms
  • Diaphragms
  • Cervical shields
  • Sponges

Intrauterine Contraceptive Devices (IUC)

This birth control method became very popular in last decade. Its quality, safety, and efficacy have tremendously improved quality of life for women of all ages.

Some of these devices -- Mirena®, Kyleena®, and Jaydess® -- release a small amount of hormone progestin which works inside the uterus, making it 10 times more effective than comparable methods. It also reduces the severity of symptoms associated with a woman’s period, such as menstrual cramping.

The IUCs Dr. Novak offers to include the following:

  • Mirena
  • Jaydess
  • Kyleena
  • Nova T®
  • Mona Lisa® IUC

Hormonal

Hormonal birth control methods change a woman’s hormone levels to make fertilization less likely.

  • “The pill”
  • Some IUCs
  • Injectables
  • Patches
  • Implants

Behavioral

Behavioral birth control provides some protection from pregnancy, but these methods, except abstinence, aren’t as effective as other birth control methods. Examples of behavioral birth control include:

  • Abstinence
  • Fertility tracking
  • Pull-out method

Permanent

Permanent sterilization makes a woman unable to get pregnant with the removal or closing off of her reproductive organs. Permanent birth control options include:

  • Sterilization implants
  • Tubal ligation
  • Vasectomy

What should I consider when choosing a birth control method?

Your chosen birth control method is a very personal choice, so it’s important to discuss your questions and concerns with Dr. Novak. Some factors you might consider to make your choice include:

  • Convenience and ease of use
  • The method’s rate of effectiveness
  • Your plans for having children
  • Your preference to have or not have a period
  • Side effects and risk factors
  • Your and your partner’s comfort
  • STI protection

What emergency birth control options do I have?

Emergency birth control is an effective backup method in case your regular form of birth control fails. For example, the morning-after pill  (e.g., Plan B and Next Choice) prevents pregnancy in several ways. It keeps your egg from being released, getting fertilized, or implanting on the uterine lining.

To discuss your available birth control methods, ask your provider to refer you to Dr. Novak for a consultation. If you are referred to Dr. Novak for IUC, he will generally see you for a consultation within two weeks.

Learn more about birth control and sexual health on the Sex & U website