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Natural Family Planning vs. Contraceptives

People have always tried to live in harmony with nature. The unity with Mother Nature has always been praised as the pledge of good life and good health. Even in our highly-industrialized times, when humans mostly move away from nature and give their preference to artificial materials, processed foods and synthetic medications, there are people convinced of the facts that the perfect cloth is that produced from natural fibers, the healthiest food is the food, given by nature, and the best remedy is the one based on herbs or other naturally-occurring substances.

By the way, the popularity of natural methods in medicine increases these days. People try to find safer and more effective alternatives to chemically synthesized medications, which often treat one disease, but worsen the symptoms of other illnesses. Contraception or birth control is also a field, where natural methods are available along with traditional medications or devices to control pregnancies. And though the popularity of natural family planning still cannot compete with the popularity of daily pills or condoms, natural methods of birth control are still worth focusing our attention at their benefits and advantages, when compared with the traditional contraceptives. 

First of all, let us define what the natural family planning is. In fact, this term defines a group of methods, such as ovulation method, rhythm method or basal body temperature method, which are based on understanding fertile and infertile days during a woman’s menstrual cycle. During the fertile days a couple avoids sexual contact to prevent pregnancy, and during the infertile days a couple may enjoy sexual relations without any contraceptive use and without the risk to conceive a baby.

The undeniable benefit of natural family planning is its safety. It is true, because all techniques of natural birth control are based on simple knowledge, that there are days when a woman is fertile and there are days, when a woman is infertile and cannot conceive a baby. So, you do not have to take the pills or use barrier contraceptives to prevent pregnancy – you just have to learn how to define your own fertile and infertile days. When there are no pills – there are no side effects, and this is the first and, probably, the most significant benefit of natural family planning.

Another obvious benefit of natural birth control is its cost or, to be more precise, its “no cost”. People practicing this method of contraception do not have to buy daily birth control pills, which can be very and very expensive.

Reversibility is another advantage of natural family planning methods. Though the majority of modern traditional contraceptives are considered to be reversible methods of birth control, some period of time is usually required for a woman to restore her fertility after contraceptives use. It can be a week or two, or even a couple of months for certain types of contraceptives. With the natural family planning, a woman is ready to get pregnant as soon as she decides to conceive a baby.

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The advocates and supporters of natural birth control methods also underline the educative aspect of using those techniques. A woman is encouraged to learn the processes inside her own organism, which leads to pregnancy. The more she understands, the better she can control those processes.

The effectiveness of natural birth control methods is sometimes said to be as high as the effectiveness of traditional birth control methods. However, this is quite a disputable issue, because the effectiveness of such methods depends much on many factors, including personal accuracy, health condition, regularity of menstruations, or even moon position. Besides, natural family planning is much of prediction; but isn’t it true that women can be so unpredictable sometimes?


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