Disclosure: This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #LetsTalkPlanB #CollectiveBias #ad
Since becoming pregnant last year, I have taken my healthcare decisions even more seriously. Throughout my adult life, and especially during pregnancy, I haven’t wanted to simply accept a certain route just because that’s what others told me to do. I put a ton of research into healthcare options when it comes to family planning, labor and delivery, and my body in general. I think too often we think there are no options instead of seeking out education and support. While we wanted to grow our family, I know not everyone has the same plan. This is especially the case for women facing a birth control failure. It has happened to friends in the past, and luckily they had access to emergency contraception. That’s why today I’m sharing my views on why it’s important to educate yourself about women’s healthcare choices as well as how to do so.
How to Become More Informed About Women’s Healthcare Choices:
We all have different family planning goals and preferred birth control methods, but it’s important to make choices beyond those. We need to consider what we would do if our preferred birth control methods fail or if you did not use birth control (by the way, you should always use a regular birth control method if you do not wish to become pregnant).
It’s important to do the following:
- Research emergency contraception even if you think you’ll never need it. Plan B One-Step can help reduce the chance of pregnancy after unprotected sex. What does Plan B One-Step do? Plan B works mainly by delaying ovulation, which helps prevent pregnancy BEFORE it begins. The active ingredient, levonorgestrel, is the same ingredient in many common birth control pills but at a higher, single dose. It’s smart to read about Plan B ahead of time, because if you decide to take it for your emergency contraception, you would need to do it as soon as possible, and definitely before 72 hours have passed after unprotected sex.
- Read information from reputable sources. Learn about others’ experiences but don’t believe everything you hear. There are a lot of myths about Plan B One-Step. You should know that it is NOT an abortion pill, and it will not affect an existing pregnancy. It’s also not meant for regular birth control. Taking Plan B One-Step will not impact a woman’s future (or long-term) fertility.
- Know how to access emergency contraception if you need it. There is no age restriction, and you do not need an ID or prescription to purchase Plan B One-Step, for example, and it’s available at Target next to the pharmacy. It’s on the bottom shelf on the aisle with other sexual health products. If you’re looking for the product and cannot locate it within the store, you can always ask the pharmacist and they will be able to help – no questions asked. You can also get a $10 coupon to use on Plan B One-Step.
- Ask your medical provider(s) questions you might have. Clarify any concerns you have about how to take it or what it does. You must use Plan B One-Step as directed, and the box lists directions and other important information on the back. When it comes to anything related to my healthcare, I ask as many questions as possible until I feel comfortable with whatever option I choose.
- Don’t worry about opinions but make decisions for your own well-being. Despite the plethora of resources available to explain emergency contraception, many people will have their own opinions about taking it. Do what is right for you, your family, your body and your health. While I personally have not used Plan B One-Step, I am grateful to know it’s an option that is available to women. I strongly believe women should have the right and ability to pursue the options that are best for them when they are in that situation. Know that if you find yourself in need of emergency contraception you are not alone: Half of the women who use Plan B are 18 to 24 years old and the other half are older than 25. The need can occur in all age groups and situations.
Do you think it’s important to know your healthcare options? Share your thoughts in the comments!