When people think of birth control, the typical, traditional methods that come to mind are the “Pill” and “Condoms”. Modern medical research has resulted new methods that are effective and may have less side effects than the “Pill”, and new and ongoing research studies for Contraception look promising.

For example, research is underway in Draper and Pleasant Grove, Utah, for a transdermal method of birth control; a birth control patch that is placed on the skin. The patch looks like a round Band-Aid, and is placed on the stomach, buttock or upper body.

The active ingredients in the patch are LNG and EE, which are female sex hormones already used in some FDA approved birth control pills. These active ingredients are absorbed through the skin.

Another modern approach to birth control is an intravaginal ring. A small, round, flexible ring is inserted into the vagina, and this ring delivers the hormonal birth control drugs. The ring is easily inserted by the user and replaced every month. A research study for a investigational intravaginal ring (IVR) is also ongoing in Draper and Pleasant Grove, Utah.

Problems with traditional birth control

Various methods of birth control have been associated with medical problems and side effects. Some women experience weight gain, depression, bleeding and other adverse side effects when they are on birth control medicines. The hormones that come in many birth control methods are often the cause of these problems. Other women experience worsening acne when on birth control, or have worsened PMS.

Switching to a different kind of birth control sometimes works to alleviate negative symptoms for women. Medical research is attempting to come up with birth control solutions that are both effective and cause limited (or fewer) side effects.

Patches and intravaginal rings may represent a better option than traditional birth control “Pills” for many women. Talk with your doctor about the different options available.

Learn more about Utah clinical trials for birth control patches and intravaginal rings here.