Getting pregnant follows a simple process, a released egg meets a contender swimmer sperm and together form a single cell (A fertilized Egg)  The pregnancy begins when that fertilized egg attaches itself to the woman’s uterus and begins to grow! The egg gets usually released between the 12th and 16th day of your cycle. The release is called ovulation, the released egg lives only about 24 hours, if it doesn’t meet a sperm during that time, it ends its journey, i.e. mafeesh baby. 

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So how effective birth control methods are? Contraceptive methods are grouped into 4 key groups, under each category there are many methods, here we will only discuss the commonly used ones in Egypt. But, how effective are those methods according to CDC ?

1- Benkhaly Balna: The ‘pull out method’ is probably the world’s oldest way to practice birth control, where the man pulls out before ejaculation. Many Egyptian couples use the pull out (aka withdrawal) method because it is natural, relatively safe and convenient. Bonus Point: no hormonal or medical side effects.  . On the downside, it requires a great deal of self-control and experience. (Not your best choice for your wedding night!!) The man needs to have enough experience to judge that ‘it is time’ where ejaculation can no longer be stopped. It has a very high failure rate, if you are serious about birth control, you better not rely on it alone – there is a reason they say ‘pull out and pray’.

2- El-lawlab:  a very popular method in Egypt – Intrauterine Contraception (IUD) – its effectiveness or success rate is 99.2% . It is a T-shaped copper rod, with an attached thread inserted into the uterus by a doctor, it works as spermicide.  It is simple, hassle-free and effective. You don’t have to follow a rigid schedule nor the hormonal side effects.

3- Condoms:  the most popular barrier method, however its failure rate is a shocking 18% Additionally, condoms have a bad reputation of being unromantic, decrease feelings and basically would ruin the mood when you have to interrupt the intimacy to put one on and put it on properly.

4- The Pill: is of course a hormonal method, containing both Estrogen and Progestin – its success rate is 91% – The pill might not be recommended by your doctor if you smoke, over 35 years old, have a family history of breast cancer and/or blood clots . According to WebMed when the pill is taken correctly, it success rate is 99.9%. It works through several mechanism, mainly by stopping ovulation in the first place (no egg – no fertilization) When do I start on the pill? birth control pills are usually effective starting the first month you. To be safe, start on the pill one cycle prior to your wedding night.

5- The Emergency Pill ( aka the morning after pill) – so now you are not planning for a baby, your mid-cycle and ovulating. The emergency pill can now be used up to 5 days after you had ‘unprotected sex’ and can be found in Egypt in some gynecologist clinics but not widely available in drugstores over the counter (as is the case generally abroad). The sooner the emergency pills are taken the better they will work.

6- Track Your Cycle – If you have a regular cycle, you have about 9 fertile days, avoid sex on those days or ‘be careful’ however be aware that you are taking chances.

Some good mobile apps out there to help you with your cycle – try Glow to track ovulation and fertility.

 

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