Madam Augustina Nsoah
Madam Augustina Nsoah

Madam Augustina Nsoah, Head of the Family Planning Unit, Tema Policlinic, has described as false, assertions that family planning could make a woman barren.

Madam Nsoah noted that family planning rather have numerous advantages for couples especially the women in terms of health and spacing of children.

Speaking to the Ghana News Agency on Friday, she indicated that family planning, especially those that had the hormones estrogens and progesterone could bring some changes to the body though.

She added that those changes could not be described as side effects or sicknesses as it was similar to the changes pregnant women undergo due to the increase in the hormones.

She therefore urged couples not to shy away from family planning but rather explore and be guided by professionals to choose a plan that would best suit them.

Madam Nsoah explained that there were a number of contraceptives including the Intrauterine Device (IUD), injectable, oral contraceptives and the implants which women were put on after testing negative to pregnancy.

The IUD, she said, was a device either made up of plastic or metal (copper) that is inserted into the uterus to prevent fertilization as it create changes in the cervical mucus as well as kills the sperm before it could travel to fertilize the egg in the womb.

The IUD, she stated, could be easily removed at any time, does not interfere in sexual intercourse, cheap, and have a 99.6 per cent effectiveness adding that the copper T type could protect a woman for 12 years while the hormonal type could last for five years.

With the oral contraceptive, the midwife indicated that it was not recommended for women who easily forgot things as one could get pregnant if they failed to take the pills for a day, adding that it must be taken at the same time every day.

The oral contraceptive, which had a 92.99 per cent effectiveness, had many advantages including the prevention of ovarian cancer, pelvic inflammatory diseases, and other sicknesses in the womb.

Madam Nsoah, touching on the injectables, noted that they were made up of two types, namely the DepoProvera which contained only one hormone and protected the woman against pregnancy for 13 weeks while the Noristerat which contained two hormones had a four week lifespan.

Whereas the DepoProvera have an effectiveness of 99.7 per cent, the Noristerat have a 99.6 effectiveness.

She mentioned that the injectables best suited women with sickle cell anaemia, fibroids and older women who smoke adding that it could lead to mood changes, menstrual changes and a little weight gain due to the hormones it contains.

The injectables, she stressed, was not good for women who had history of migraine as it led to some slight headaches in the first four months of usage.

Madam Nsoah observed that the implant was another family planning method which protected women for up to three years by inserting of a thin rod into the left upper arm.

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