Studies In Family Planning

When one hears the term” family planning” images of contraceptive devices usually come into mind since the term has been synonymous with birth con...


When one hears the term” family planning” images of contraceptive devices usually come into mind since the term has been synonymous with birth control. While this is partly true, there are a lot of topics under family planning that matters to health professionals and policy-makers around the world. From the term itself, family planning is simply planning on the number of children one wants to have in a family. The process of planning may also indicate the number of years spaced between birth of children since this factor affects maternal health. Family planning is often undertaken by couples who believe that the number of children in a family is highly related with quality of life. However, there are also other issues in family planning such as pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, infertility, sexuality education and conception. Such issues have great effect on a country especially those that have high birth-rates. Many densely-populated countries like India, China, Brazil and Philippines are controlling their population since it has effect on the economy especially if the resources are limited. Also, family planning is a holistic approach towards the development of all members of the family but is often limited to the partners as practiced by many family planning counselors.

Studies in family planning also include promoting sexual education to young people who are at risk for unwanted pregnancy. Some countries integrate sex education curriculum modules into classes so learners would be exposed to the basic facts about sexual reproduction. However, there are countries that prohibit such due to strong influence of religious institutions. Aside from sexual counseling , family planning studies also focus on maternal health. Mothers are at risk of infection and pregnancy complications when are undernourished and neglected during pregnancy. Family planning studies have been supported by grants coming from NGOs, universities, foundations, private businesses and large global organizations such as WHO and United Nations. The main purpose of funding studies in family planning is to encourage researchers to publish studies that would address issues in reproductive health, maternal mortality, sexual education, infertility and current methods of family planning.

Natural Family Planning Doctors


The availability of many family planning options in the market makes it easier for couples to manage their future by spacing the children that they plan to have. Despite the artificial contraceptives in the market, many couples still prefer to use natural family planning methods since it does not have any side effects. Some women cannot tolerate nausea, dizziness, vomiting or weight gain that comes along with pills or injections. Others find the IUD as obtrusive and experience abdominal cramps and slight bleeding, No wonder millions of couples still opt to use natural family planning methods such as Rhythm and Standard Calendar Method. Mothers who have just given birth also prefer lactational amenorrhea since breastfeeding not only help grow healthy babies but keep the mother unfertilized as well.

Choosing a natural family planning option is a good decision that both partners must deliberate on. Since there are many types of natural methods, couples can pick a method that would suit their needs and style. The most crucial element in adopting a method is consulting natural family planning doctors. Usually, general practitioners can give proper advise on a certain method that a couple chooses to follow. There are also specialists such as Ob-gynecologists who can share advice on the different types of natural family planning methods such as rhythm or calendar method. The doctors can cite the advantages and disadvantages of each method since couples can also be forgetful at times leading to fertilization. Natural family planning doctors can explain the percentage of effectiveness of a certain method when diligently followed.

Similarly, there should also be explanation of possible consequences in case the couple deviate from a procedure. Women who have irregular period should report to the doctor about such instances since most natural methods depend on the woman’s ovulation. Another advantage of consulting natural family planning doctors is that the couple can clear misconceptions about reproductive health. Also, consulting a doctor makes the couple feel confident that a medical specialist with adequate training and experience can handle any of their reproductive issues objectively. In short, consult a doctor before starting a family planning program.

Male Family Planning


Ever since, the active role in family planning is usually assumed by women by using various methods such as IUD, oral contraceptives, cervical sponges, hormonal injections etc. Women partners often encourage their partners to cooperate in preventing contraception since family planning has long-term effects for a family’s future. Maternal mortality can be lessened by adequately spacing the frequency of child birth which also results to healthier babies. Recently, various countries around the world has raised advocacy for the involvement of males in family planning. This has been a trend for some years now especially in countries that are considered patriarchal. The government in such countries mandate the health bureau or ministry to plan, implement and monitor programs that promote male involvement in family planning. One of the main reasons behind this very obvious: women need the full support and cooperation of their partners to effectively practice family planning. In cases where the family planning method chosen is natural method, both partners must strictly follow the rules such as abstaining from intercourse during fertile periods. Deviation from such rule would result to pregnancy thereby defeating the main purpose. Therefore, males are active players in the natural method of family planning.

Another reason why males should be involved in family planning is for the prevention of transmitting sexual diseases. Males who use condoms protect not only themselves but their partners as well. The alarming increase of AIDS worldwide has triggered campaigns that encourage men to use condoms during intercourse. In a way, this provides benefit by lessening the incidence of contraception or unwanted pregnancy. Most drugstore and groceries openly promote condoms on the shelves so the public can easily buy without asking for assistance.

One method that is 100% effective in promoting family planning is vasectomy. Some families have many children and the mother is already unfit to bear children. Male partners could actively involve themselves by having a vasectomy. Health providers give complete orientation to men undergoing this procedure to clear any misconception such as loss of libido or male virility. In short, male involvement in family planning can greatly enhance its effectiveness which is very much needed by their women partners.

IUD Family Planning


Family planning is an important issue for couples that must be carefully deliberated since it affects the reproductive health of both husband and wife. There are many methods available for family planning that reproductive health professionals often advise to couples. One of the most popular method is IUD family planning. IUD means “ intra-uterine device “ also known as the “coil” by most women. Actually, it is a small device shaped like a T and carefully inserted by a doctor into the uterus. The procedure usually lasts for a couple of minutes and the woman can resume her normal activities after leaving the clinic. IUD family planning is popular since it is 98-99% effective in preventing conception. Some IUDs secrete progestin, which is similar to a female hormone and acts by preventing egg cells from being released into the ovary. In fact, most oral contraceptives ( pills) contain progestin.
IUDs can work for long-term as a method of family planning since it can stay in the womb between 5-10 years ( or until the couple decides to conceive). Another interesting thing about this device is that it can act as an emergency contraceptive device if used within five days of unprotected sex. IUD family planning is relatively easy to use since one can forget about it after being put in place. The doctor can check periodically if the threads are in its proper place so pulling it out would not be a problem. Unlike pills, episodes that are missed could lead to pregnancy. Even the husband would not feel anything irregular at all during intercourse although it takes time for some women to adjust having IUD in their system. Moreover, using IUD for family planning does not prevent any of the partners from sexually transmitted diseases. There is also a possibility for a woman to be infected when having multiple sexual partners while on IUD. IUD family planning can be a good option especially if couples lead busy lives.

The important thing is to discuss with a doctor this option to ensure all precautions are met before using the IUD.

Family Planning Rhythm Method


Successful family planning is brought about by mutual cooperation and support from both partners. It is also important to thoroughly familiarize with the different methods available for family planning since couples have different needs. Some women have a hard time adjusting to artificial contraceptives due to various side effects such as nausea, dizziness, changes in body weight and stomach cramps. For these reasons, some couples prefer to use natural family planning methods since it is safer and does not cost anything at all. There are several types of natural family planning methods used by couples worldwide which can be considered as effective and safe. One of these methods is known as the rhythm method; however, consulting a doctor or reproductive specialist should be the first step in adopting this method. Most mistakes in family planning happen when people assume they know what to do. Only a doctor can properly advise partners on how to maximize the results for this given method. Since rhythm is a natural family planning method, there are certain procedures that must be strictly followed so fertilization would not occur.

A key element in rhythm method for family planning is determining the menstruation cycle of the woman. It is crucial that women who use this method must have a regular cycle or else predicting safe periods would entail higher risk. Once the regular period is determined, mark on the calendar 14 days before the menstruation. The ovulation or release of egg cells happens during these two weeks before menstruation. It is not advisable for couples to have intercourse for 7 days leading to ovulation period since sperm cells would definitely fertilize the egg cells. As a warning, it must be considered that sperm cells can survive as much as 5 days in the uterus. Women can also check their body temperatures in the morning since elevated temperatures indicates ovulation. In cases where intercourse cannot be avoided, condoms can offer protection. The rhythm method for family planning is simple to use but works for those who have regular periods. The success of this method depends on the accuracy of a woman’s ovulation and cooperation of her male partner.

Family Planning Options


Couples who plan for their future can choose from many family planning options available in the market today. A wealth of information can be derived from hospitals, family planning counselors, reproductive specialists and even health agencies by the government that promotes family planning methods. In fact, most of the counseling services and information are free to those couples who have decided to plan their families. Even NGOs and private health clinics promote different family planning options that are in line with the government campaign towards reduced birth rate.
Family planning options have two categories: natural family planning and artificial family planning options. The natural family planning method is easy to use, cost less and requires active participation from both partners. The three groups of natural methods are symptoms-based, calendar based , and lactational amenorrhea. Religious groups encourage the use of methods since they follow the natural rhythm of the body. Symptoms-based includes the cervical mucus method and the body temperature method. The calendar-based presents the Rhythm method and Standard days method which relies on the regular ovulation period of the woman. Lactational amenorrhea is depending on breastfeeding to keep the mother safe from conception. Since the aforementioned methods are natural, the effectiveness highly-depends on the couple’s observance of procedures as advised by a doctor.

Another option for family planning involves artificial methods. Couples who have busy schedules may opt for these methods which includes : oral contraceptives, hormone injections, IUD, condoms, vaginal contraceptive ring ( known as female condoms), diaphragm, cervical cap, and permanent sterilization. Most of the artificial methods have a high rate of effectiveness when properly used. Oral contraceptives and hormone injections have side-effects such as nausea, dizziness and weight gain. IUDs are also effective and good for long-term use. Condoms are the easiest to use and source out as long as the male partner is willing to use it. Permanent sterilization such as vasectomy is also good for those who do not want to have children anymore. Each option has its pros and cons that is why it is best to seek medical advice before using any of the aforementioned contraceptives. Family planning is becomes easy since any of the options can be chosen to fitcouples needs.

Family Planning Education


The majority of young people today have been increasingly sexually active which is now a concern for many parents and guardians. The mass media has popularized sex symbols and serves as conduit to present mixed messages to the young viewers about the real role of sex in daily lives. All kinds of sex are seen as permissible and these shows or materials are even accessed through the internet. It takes one click to surf websites that demonstrates graphic illustrations about sex whereas before, one has to discreetly purchase or rent adult movies. Because of this, even elementary level students can view sites that are prohibited to minors by declaring false age. Because of these circumstances, governments all around the world are improvising ways to promote family planning education.

Family planning education has many benefits for a nation. One, it curbs down the birth rate thereby enabling families to have children that are adequately spaced apart in birth. This allows time for mothers to heal their bodies and spend enough time to rear the newborn. Also, family planning education helps families prepare their future since fewer children mean better allocation of resources for food, education , and other important expenses. It is then up to the government to conduct an aggressive drive to promote family planning education to its citizens. Various incentives can be offered to families so that the campaign may be more effective.

Family planning education for young people can also be introduced through the school system. By doing so, the age group that would become sexually active ( or currently active) would be informed about responsible parenthood. This group would realize that their current role in life is to pursue their education to become productive members of the society. Family planning education is not just about sex but facing responsibilities attached to reproduction. Also, family planning education presents concerns such as sexually-transmitted diseases that young people would like to know more but couldn’t find appropriate sources. In short, family planning education benefits society by providing the right kind of information in an objective manner and correcting wrong practices which lead to unwanted pregnancy.

Family Planning Chart


One of the natural methods of family planning is known as the rhythm method. The rhythm method is considered a natural method since there is no need for any artificial contraceptive to prevent fertilization. Using this method is advisable for women who have regular monthly period. An erratic period could be unreliable as basis for determining the ovulation cycle. A woman’s ovulation cycle is important to know since this has a lot to do with her becoming fertile. For one, egg cells are being released by the ovary during this period which makes her easy to conceive. After the period from which the egg cells become unfertilized since there was no sexual contact, she begins to have her regular menstruation. A regular cycle happens between 28-30 days interval. Monthly periods that are irregular or delayed pose as a risk when using the rhythm method for contraception.

Another basis for determining fertility is Basal Body Temperature. BBT is actually the body’s temperature at normal levels equivalent to 97F. During the ovulation period, body temperature rises due to hormonal changes and this can be detected by a rise of half a degree that can reach 98F. It is very easy to detect this since the higher body temperature remains for a number of days. In fact, millions of women around the world use this method in keeping track of their ovulation period. The BBT needs only a mercury thermometer that can accurately read the body’s temperature.

In order to keep track of ovulation, there is a need to use a family planning chart. The chart records the daily changes in the body’s temperature which can be analyzes later to see if there is a pattern. The chart can be a simple log of what is the reading on the thermometer for a day. The reading should be done on a daily basis at the dame hour or minute it was done. After a few days, the log can also be drawn as a graph which charts the decrease or increase of temperature. This family planning chart guide couples in determining which days they should abstain from sex. Diligent observance of the abstinence would make the rhythm method an effective natural method for birth control.

Family Planning Benefit Program


One of the most important decisions that a couple must make in the course of their relationship is family planning. Smart choices in family planning methods has long term implications for a family’s future. Fewer children could mean better allocation of family resources for food, education and other needs; however, there are many couples in dire need of family planning but cannot afford the services due to financial constraints. The solution to this problem is to avail of family planning benefit program that the state offers for its constituents. Controlling the population is also the state’s concern since an increased population is considered in urban planning and development.

Most states offer Family Planning Benefit program to individuals ages 10- 64 and whose family income does not exceed 200% of the determined poverty level. Qualified individuals can apply online by filling up a downloadable form and submitting it with all the information needed. An appointment is needed so that the health staff can properly assess the application and conduct an interview. At most times, the applicant must also bring some documents such as Photo ID, Birth Certificate ( to prove age), Naturalization certificate, Proof of residency, Social Security number, and Proof of recent monthly income and documentation of any child care expenses. Individuals under 21 years of age are also eligible to apply on their own based on their income. People who qualified for the program are notified within a few weeks after their application and would immediately receive a card that they can use when getting contraceptives from the accredited pharmacy. The card allows them to get birth control prescriptions at no cost at all. It is a standard practice that all applications are strictly kept confidential.

Family Planning Benefit programs generally offer services such as male and female sterilization, STD counseling and testing, HIV counseling and testing, birth control methods, emergency contraception and pregnancy testing. People with private health insurance can try to apply also if they prefer not to use their own health insurance plans but this must be consulted first with the staff. Indeed, Family Planning Benefit programs help the general public with their needs at no cost all.

Effectiveness of Natural Family Planning


When it comes to family planning, some couples prefer to use the natural family or “rhythm “ method since it is considered as unobtrusive way of preventing fertilization. First of all, a couple must completely agree This method is solely dependent on refraining from sexual intercourse on periods where a woman is considered fertile. The period that is considered fertile for a woman is two weeks before her menstruation since egg cells are being released by the ovary during this time. Nevertheless, egg cells that are unfertilized usually die after 12 hours but precautions are still made since sperm cells react differently. There is a set period where a couple can have sex since the sperm has longevity that extends to as much as 5 days after intercourse. So if the egg cells are released with sperm cells that are still present, fertilization occurs. The effectiveness of natural family planning depends on the couple’s ability to accurately predict the ovulation period of the woman.

There are two methods that can be used for predicting the ovulation period.

The first method is commonly known as “ Cervical Mucus Method” since the cervical mucus is the indicator of a woman’s fertility period. The effectiveness of natural family planning in this case solely relies on observation of the secretion to determine whether it is the right time to have intercourse.

On the other hand, the temperature method relies on the basal body temperature of the woman as an indicator. This is technically known as symptom-thermal method and has been found effective by as much as 97% in cases among German couples according to a study published in the American Journal of Obstetric in Gynecology in 1991. Intercourse is strictly prohibited during within the fertile period since deviation would immediately result to conception. However, couples who adhere to the right procedure can benefit from the effectiveness of natural family planning. The most crucial part of the natural family planning method is the couple’s determination to work things out by sticking to the plan. If the coupled is convinced that family planning through natural method would benefit their future, then this method would be very effective.