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Posts for tag: Birth Control

By James A. Scales, MD
November 01, 2018
Category: Birth Control
Tags: IUD   Birth Control   Diaphragm  

Choosing the right birth control to suit your needs and lifestyle is a very important and personal decision that you will have to consider if you are sexually active and do not want to get pregnant. During this time it’s important to have an OBGYN that you can turn to not just for proper checkups and health care, but also to present you with the different birth control options available to you so that you can make an informed decision about your sexual health.

Birth control falls into two categories: Hormonal and non-hormonal. While this may certainly be a factor in the decision-making process there are also other factors and benefits that some birth control may offer that may make it more ideal for you than others. For example, there are some forms of birth control that can improve cramping and other PMS symptoms, while other birth control options are easy to use and don’t require you to take them at the same time each day. These are all things to consider when it comes to choosing the proper birth control for you.

There are approximately 12 different kinds of birth control including:

  • Condoms
  • Spermicides
  • Contraceptive pills
  • Birth control implant
  • Vaginal ring
  • Patch
  • Diaphragm
  • Intrauterine device (IUD)
  • Injection
  • Tubal ligation
  • Abstinence

As you might imagine, contraceptive pills, the ring, patch, implant, injection, and plastic IUDs are hormonal, which means that these methods release hormones that prevent the ovaries from releasing an egg.

Non-hormonal methods include the diaphragm, copper IUD, spermicides, and condoms. When used correctly, condoms are also able to protect against STDS. It’s important to understand that while many of these methods are designed to prevent pregnancy they do not protect against STDS. This is why it’s still important to wear a condom even if you are taking birth control.

Of course, for women who are already finished with family planning or have chosen not to have children, they may opt for tubal ligation, which is a permanent way to prevent pregnancy.


It’s important that you fully understand the advantages and disadvantages of each birth control method beforehand. This is why it’s so vital to have a gynecologist you can trust to sit down with you and to help you determine the best option for your needs. Call your OBGYN today to schedule an appointment.

By James A. Scales, MD
August 09, 2018
Category: Birth Control
Tags: IUD   Birth Control   Contraception  

Birth Control MethodsLet us help you choose the right birth control to fit your lifestyle.

Choosing birth control is a very personal decision and one that can sometimes feel rather confusing. After all, there are so many different options out there that you may not be sure which one is the best approach for your sexual health. This is where our Texarkana, TX, OBGYN, Dr. James Scales, comes in. We are happy to talk to you about your birth control options and answer any questions you might have.

Birth control can be divided into five different categories:

  • Hormonal options
  • Barrier methods
  • Intrauterine device (IUD)
  • Natural methods
  • Emergency contraception

Hormonal Options

This includes everything from birth control pills, patches, implants, and the ring. Hormonal birth control can contain estrogen or progestin-only (also referred to as the minipill). There are many different birth control pill options and our gynecologist in Texarkana would be happy to help you determine the best one for you.

Barrier Methods

This includes condoms, diaphragms, and cervical caps. Condoms are also the only birth control method that also protects against STDs. This is why it’s important that you use a condom even if you are using other birth control methods because it is the only thing that can prevent the spread of STDs. Condoms, diaphragms, and cervical caps can be found at your local drugstore and don’t require a prescription.

Intrauterine Device

An IUD, is a very small device that is placed into the uterus where it will stay anywhere from 3-10 years. This is a great option for women who don’t want to worry about taking a pill at the same time every day or who aren’t looking to get pregnant for a few years. Of course, if you do change your mind and want to get pregnant, our doctor can remove the IUD at any time.

The two types of IUDs are copper or hormonal, and the one that’s right for you will depend on your specific birth control needs and lifestyle. Since there are no hormones within the copper IUD, women do not experience the side effects that they can with hormonal birth control.

Natural Methods and Emergency Contraception

Natural methods include abstinence or the rhythm method, in which you track your fertile and infertile times of the month to prevent pregnancy. Emergency contraception shouldn’t be used as a regular birth control method but can be taken to prevent pregnancy within the first three days after unprotected sex.

If you want to talk to our Texarkana, TX, OB/GYN about the best birth control option for you don’t hesitate to give our office a call today to schedule a consultation with us. We know choosing the best birth control method for you is a personal decision; let us help make the decision easier.

By James A. Scales, MD
March 02, 2018
Category: Birth Control
Tags: IUD   Birth Control  

Birth Control OptionsIf you are not planning on becoming pregnant than your thoughts might turn to considering birth control. There is a lot of information out there on the subject and, of course, there is also a lot of misinformation. This is why it’s important that you have a gynecologist to which you can turn to provide you with all the accurate and personalized information you need on birth control. Find out what options are available to you so you can make a more informed decision about your sexual health.

Birth Control Pill

By taking this hormone medication at the same time each day you can prevent pregnancy from occurring. Birth control pills stop ovulation, which means that the sperm will not be able to fertilize the egg. It’s important that you remember to take this medication at the same time each day to make sure that it is most effective.

Of course, the pill will not protect against STDs, so it’s important that you continue to use condoms every time to reduce your risk.


Most people know about condoms, the only birth control method that protects against both pregnancy and STDs. Condoms can be made from a variety of materials and work by preventing sperm from entering the vagina. It’s important to use condoms during oral, vaginal and anal sex to fully protect yourself against STDs. Even if you decide on another form of birth control it’s important that you continue to use condoms.

Intrauterine Device (IUD)

This small T-shaped device is placed in the uterus to prevent pregnancy. There are several options out there that are both hormonal and non-hormonal (copper IUDs). The copper IUD can prevent pregnancy for up to 12 years while hormonal IUDs can work for several years depending on the specific type you choose. You’ll come into the office for a minor insertion procedure so we place the IUD. Once it’s placed it will remain there for several years before needing to be removed. If you do decide to get pregnant while you have an IUD, all we have to do is remove it.

Of course, there are many other forms of birth control from the patch to injections to an implant. Whether you have questions about birth control or you are ready to discuss your options, it’s time you turned to an OBGYN who can guide you through the many choices and help you determine which one might be the best one for you based on your lifestyle and needs.

By James A. Scales, MD
February 13, 2017
Category: Women's Health
Tags: Birth Control  

Birth control is used in order to prevent pregnancy by using one or more methods or devices. Medical contraception is available from Dr. birth controlJames Scales at his Texarkana, TX, office. He can discuss with you the variety of options available to you and suggest those that suit your health the best. Ultimately, all types of birth control have both risks and benefits to their use. A full disclosure conversation regarding your medical history helps Dr. Scales determine which will work best.

Birth Control Options in Texarkana

There are countless birth control methods available. The method chosen will depend on the woman's age, health history, preference and overall comfort. Here are some of the most popular birth control options offered from Dr. Scales:

  • Hormonal Birth Control: This includes implants, patches, injections and pills. This method prevents fertilization and stops ovulation. The effectiveness depends on the user and whether they follow the proper schedule. Implants are long-acting and need to be replaced once every three years.
  • Intrauterine Devices (IUD): This is a t-shape appliance that is placed into the uterus. This long-acting birth control administers an active ingredient that prevents pregnancy.
  • Barrier Methods: These can include sponges, diaphragms and condoms. They prevent sperm from entering the uterus.
  • Sterilization: Perhaps the least popular, this method severs the ability to reproduce. Recovery time is generally short and the procedure is minimally-invasive and has no long-term side effects.

Dr. Scales, your Texarkana, TX Obstetrician/Gynecologist, can help discuss your birth control options. He will work with you directly and consider your specific health when suggesting the best option for you. He is ready and willing to answer any question you may have about birth control or your sexual health. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Scales today, call (903) 614-3003 today.

By James A. Scales, MD
November 03, 2016
Category: Women's Health
Tags: OBGYN   IUD   Birth Control  

What is an IUD?


An IUD (intra uterine device) is a temporary form of birth control for women. It is a small, plastic device that is implanted into the uterus by an OBGYN to prevent pregnancy.

How Does an IUD Work?

There are two different forms of the device - hormonal and copper. The device prevents pregnancy in several ways. The copper version prevents fertilization by targeting and killing the sperm. The hormonal version releases daily low levels of levonorgestrel, thickens the mucus produced by the cervix during ovulation and thins out the uterine lining, all of which prevent the sperm from fertilizing an egg.

Do IUDs Provide STD/STI Protection?

No. IUDs only offer protection from pregnancy, and will not protect against sexually transmitted diseases and infections. Discuss sexual activity and risk factors with your OBGYN to determine the best methods for protection and safe sex with an IUD.

Who is a Good Candidate for an Intra Uterine Device?

IUDs are safe and effective for both younger women in their teens and older women, and can be used whether or not a woman has already given birth.

Will an IUD Affect the Ability to Get Pregnant in the Future?

No. The device does not affect fertility, and the woman's ability to conceive will be the same as before the device was implanted once it is removed, according to the woman's age and individual fertility levels. Once a woman is ready to become pregnant, an OBGYN can help to establish a fertility chart to determine ovulation and the best time to conceive.

Is the Device Painful?

Some women, particularly those who have never had children, may experience some initial discomfort when it is first implanted. Over the counter pain killers like Advil or Motrin prior to insertion of the device can help to minimize any pain or discomfort during and immediately following implantation.