The Nourished Blog

Is This ONE Thing Holding You Back From Natural Birth Control?

I’ve taught hundreds of women how to  kick birth control to the curb  and prevent pregnancy with natural birth control.

And in my time as a certified Fertility Awareness Educator, I’ve found that there is one VERY common roadblock to learning the method…

Can you guess what it is, too?

The paralyzing fear of all the “bad things” that might happen once you get off of birth control.

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I feel like these paralyzing fears come from a few common places…

Maybe you can relate to one of these?

– Misinformation and a lack of education from our OBGYNS about FAM

– Misinformation and a lack of education from family/friends FAM

– Women who claim they got pregnant “using FAM,” but in actuality, they were using the ineffective “calendar or rhythm method.” Which I will explain more about soon!

– A lack of funded research (because FAM doesn’t make money for big pharma)

Now, before we launch into this post, I want to share that I actually have no issues with hormonal birth control.

Believe it or not, I am actually incredibly grateful for the many wins that prescription birth control has given SO many women. 

Heck, I even used it for seven years of my life!

We can’t underestimate the positive impact birth control has had on so many. It has allowed many women the opportunity to live life on THEIR terms, without the fear of getting pregnant.

But, there often comes a time when a person begins to question their birth control choices.

Maybe you’ve been there, too? I know I have!

You may be getting more “health-conscious” and are reconsidering taking a daily medication to reach your goals.

Or maybe you’re just TIRED of the unwanted side effects that often accompany hormonal birth control.

And for many, there is this strong pull to feel more connected and in tune with their body.

They want to become deeply educated on how their body and menstrual cycle functions and this is a HUGE reason women are now looking for a more natural way to prevent pregnancy – aka natural birth control.

No matter what your reason is for considering Fertility Awareness Method (or maybe you are already using it 👏🏼👏🏼) it is a big step forward in a new direction!

And whenever we are faced with a big life decision, there are some common fears that tend to hold us back.

Clearly… GETTING PREGNANT is a huge one in this scenario. 

So let’s dig into the science of natural birth control, shall we?

“I’m too afraid to use the Fertility Awareness Method because I’m afraid I’ll get pregnant!”

Did you know that Fertility Awareness Method (FAM) is actually 99% effective when done correctly? 

This is the exact SAME effectiveness as hormonal birth control and the IUD.

But I’m guessing you’re wanting the science behind this, so I GOT you…

First, I want you to know that one of the reasons OBGYNs are so hesitant to recommend FAM is because we have not spent enough time/resources getting a whole ton of studies done on the method.

(But who would devote time and money on conducting FAM studies when FAM doesn’t, in turn, make more money for big pharma… you with me?)

Regardless, just because there is way more time and money devoted to studying the efficacy of prescription birth control… it does NOT mean that the smaller amount of research done on fertility awareness-based methods is invalid.

Because there is less research on FAM/natural birth control, many medical providers are discounting it as less effective OR they are confusing it with the “calendar method” or “rhythm method” which is absolutely not the same thing. 

This calendar method predicts your fertile window based on your average cycle patterns and completely discounts the fact that ovulation can change. 

The only way to truly understand your fertile window is by observing cervical mucus – which the calendar/rhythm method does not do (hence why it is only 76% effective).

Now, back to FAM’s 99% effectiveness…

With everything, there is both imperfect and perfect use of the method (think birth control pills – you have to take it at the same time every 24 hours for the highest efficacy rate).

With FAM, perfect use means that you’re charting your biomarkers daily, you have a strong understanding of cervical mucus, and you follow the “rules” for pre-ovulatory sex.

Also, working with a certified natural birth control instructor increases this effectiveness because you can ensure that you’re using the method and charting your biomarkers correctly!

THIS website does a great job of breaking down the science for ya if you want to read up a little more on the studies.

This study also explains the efficacy of FAM for preventing pregnancy:

“With correct use to avoid pregnancy, the pregnancy rate is <5 per 100 women years for all methods included, and for some methods, it is <1%.” See the full study here.

Please note that it does depend on the method, but 95-99% efficacy rate is pretty darn HIGH, my friends! 

This study also does a great job of explaining natural birth control efficacy rates.

Below is a recap of the results:

“After 13 cycles, 1.8 per 100 women of the cohort experienced an unintended pregnancy; 9.2 per 100 women dropped out because of dissatisfaction with the method; the pregnancy rate was 0.6 per 100 women and per 13 cycles when there was no unprotected intercourse in the fertile time.”

Human Reproduction, Volume 22, Issue 5.

While I am fully aware that Fertility Awareness Method is not for everyone, I never want someone to be turned away from natural birth control out of fear (or inaccurate information on the method).

If you’re ever nervous and need to talk through the pros and cons of using FAM, I am here for you. You can schedule a free discovery call here!

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Hi, I’m Nina! I’m a Certified Fertility Awareness Educator who teaches women how to transition off of birth control and prevent pregnancy hormone-free.

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