Every couple wants to have a healthy and happy family. However, planning a family can be a challenging endeavor for some couples. Luckily, there are many methods of natural family planning that can help teams achieve their goals.
Traditional methods are non-invasive and do not use drugs or surgery. They rely on the natural signals that the body sends to indicate when it’s the right time to have intercourse.
If you’re interested in using a traditional natural family planning method, below are some popular options to consider.
The symptothermal method
This method relies on temperature readings and cervical mucus changes to determine when a woman is ovulating. Couples who use this method typically have intercourse during the “fertile window,” about six days before ovulation and the day of ovulation.
To perform the symptothermal method, you will need to take your basal body temperature every morning and track your cervical mucus changes. You can do this using a fertility awareness chart.
By tracking your body temperature, you will be able to figure out when you are ovulating and avoid intercourse during the days when you are or are not fertile.
The rhythm method
The rhythm method is another traditional natural family planning option. This method relies on the assumption that sperm can live for up to five days inside a woman’s body and that ovulation can take place up to five days after the start of menstruation.
Couples who use this method typically avoid intercourse during the week before ovulation and the first three days after ovulation.
To use the rhythm method, you will need to track your menstrual cycle closely. You can do this by recording the start and end of your period each month. However, this method is not as accurate as other methods, especially for women with irregular menstrual cycles. So, it might not be the best choice for everyone.
The lactational amenorrhea method
The lactational amenorrhea method (LAM) is a natural family planning option that can be used by breastfeeding mothers. This method relies on the fact that when a woman is exclusively breastfeeding, her body does not ovulate.
To use the LAM method, you will need to breastfeed your child on-demand and avoid using any other form of contraception. This method is highly effective when used correctly.
But, it is essential to note that LAM is not practical for all women. If you stop breastfeeding, or if your child starts eating solid foods, you will likely begin to ovulate again and will need to use a different method of contraception.
The calendar method
The calendar method is one of the simplest traditional natural family planning methods. This method relies on tracking the length of your menstrual cycle to figure out when you are ovulating.
Couples who use this method typically avoid intercourse during the week of ovulation and the week before ovulation.
To use the calendar method, you will need to track the start and end of your menstrual cycle for at least six months. After monitoring your cycles for a while, you will figure out when you are ovulating and avoid intercourse during those days.
Abstinence is a natural form of contraception that does not require any devices or drugs. When you abstain from intercourse, you essentially prevent yourself from getting pregnant.
It is a one hundred percent effective way to prevent pregnancy and is perfect for couples who do not want to use any other methods.
However, abstinence can be challenging to stick to, especially for couples who are sexually active. So, necessary efforts must be made to abstain from intercourse, especially during fertile periods.
What to do for an unplanned pregnancy
If you do get pregnant despite using a natural family planning method, there are options available to you. You can choose to keep the baby, or you can choose to terminate the pregnancy. Whichever route you choose, make sure to consult with a healthcare professional to get the best advice for your specific situation.
Some clinics specializing in pregnancy termination offer their services if you decide the latter. It’s a professional and safe environment, and you can be sure to receive the best possible care.
There are many traditional methods of natural family planning that you can consider. So, if you’re interested in using a technique not listed here, be sure to do some research.
Each method has its own set of pros and cons, so it is crucial to choose the best one for you and your partner. Either way, talk to your healthcare provider to learn more about these methods and find the right one for you.