In Others' WordsIn Others' Words

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Beads and Birth Control

Birth control can be a sensitive topic. Some women are all for it, some aren't. For those women who practice birth control, there are a number of options to choose from--some medical, some "natural."
Beads, anyone?
There's a new "natural family planning method" in which women use a set of beads to keep track of their fertile days. The method is effective and widely acceptable to women and their partners, according to a new study conducted at 14 sites in six countries.
Developed at the Georgetown University Institute for Reproductive Health in Washington, DC, the Standard Days Method (SDM), is for women with menstrual cycles between 26 to 32 days long. Women are instructed that they may become pregnant if they have sex on days 8 to 19 of their cycle. Women using the SDM can use a set of beads the Georgetown team designed, known as CycleBeads, to keep track of their fertile days, and may abstain from sex on those days if they don't want to get pregnant.
SDM has been tested by more than 1600 women. Ninety percent of both men and women in the study said they felt the SDM was easy to use, and that they would recommend it to others.
The "birds and the bees"--and beads.
That's a new one on me.

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