Natural family planning

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Natural family planning may be an appealing birth control option if you can't or choose not to use other contraceptives.

Natural family planning is a method of birth control that helps you predict when ovulation will happen — and when you need to avoid unprotected sex if you don't want to conceive a child. This birth control method may involve charting your temperature daily, tracking changes in cervical mucus and paying attention to other key fertility indicators.

Another type of natural family planning is withdrawal, in which the penis is removed from the vagina before ejaculation to try to prevent pregnancy.

Natural family planning requires motivation, diligence and self-control. Natural family planning isn't as effective as other types of birth control, but it's inexpensive and doesn't have any side effects.

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Jan. 12, 2021