Natural family planning

    • Brief

    • Natural family planning means that no methods of contraception are used.

      There are various methods of natural family planning:

      • Not having sexual intercourse. However, it is natural for people to have sex.
      • Not having sexual intercourse when a woman is in her fertile period. This method is also called the rhythm method. However, it is difficult to know on which days a woman can get pregnant.
      • Withdrawing the penis before the man ejaculates.
      • Breast-feeding.
    • Withdrawal method

    • Withdrawing the penis before the man ejaculates:

      • Before he ejaculates, a man may already lose a bit of fluid that might contain sperm cells.
      • It is difficult to know exactly when a man ejaculates. An orgasm is often very overwhelming or fast and unexpected. Then it is very difficult to withdraw the penis before the first semen comes out.
      • If the man ejaculates near the vagina, sperm cells might reach the vagina. This means the woman could get pregnant.
    • Breastfeeding

    • The breastfeeding method only works under the following conditions:

      • The method only works during the first six months following delivery. After six months, it is best to use a method of contraception, even if you have not had a menstrual period. For instance: the condom or the mini-pill.
      • The woman must only breastfeed her baby. This means the baby only gets breast milk. There should never be more than 4 hours between feedings during the day and 6 hours during the night.
      • The woman should not express milk. Expressing milk is squeezing the breast with a hand or using a pump to suck milk from the breast.
      • If you do not meet these conditions, use a method of contraception. While breastfeeding, it is best to use a condom or the mini-pill.
    • How reliable is the natural family planning method?

    • It is difficult to use natural family planning methods correctly. You can get pregnant if you do not use these methods correctly.

      If you do not wish to have children, it is best to consider using another method. Ask a doctor or midwife for advice.

      The breastfeeding method is reliable during the first 6 months following delivery. After 6 months, the method is no longer reliable.

    • No protection against STIs and HIV

    • Natural family planning methods do not protect you against STIs or HIV. Only a condom can protect you.