Frame Messages Positively
In addition to discussing risks, side effects, and bleeding changes, the patient may not know about the advantages and non-contraceptive benefits of contraception, such as the potential for prevention of uterine, ovarian, or colon cancer, and treatment of dysmenorrhea, endometriosis, and acne.
A patient often has misinformation or misconceptions, like:
1. a belief that amenorrhea with hormonal contraception is unsafe
2. a belief that all contraception is equally effective
3. a belief that pregnancy is safer than contraception ("it's natural")
4. a belief that contraception adversely impacts fertility
5. they may underestimate their own or their partner's fertility
Instead of disagreeing, use the Finding the Yes! model and then add factual information after demonstrating empathy, agreement, or validation.
Example: "My mother says it's not healthy to skip my period. I don't think I should go on the pill because I know that sometimes makes people miss their period."
Try: "Yes, your mother is completely right! When you are not using birth control with hormones in it, it is important to get your period. I'm so glad you know that! Interestingly, if someone is using hormonal birth control (like the method we're talking about), it is actually very healthy for the uterus." You can always follow this with visual aids like this one.
Example: "All contraception is equally effective."
Respond with a visual aid that shows relative effectiveness. Examples can be found here.
Example: "I don't want to go on birth control because I want to have kids at some point and I don’t want to mess with my ability to get pregnant."
Try: "Yes, I hear that from my patients a lot! I can see that it is important to you to be a parent someday, and you don't want anything getting in the way of that. You're right that with one of the methods, the shot, it can take a while for someone’s ability to get pregnant to go back to whatever is normal for them. With all of the other methods your ability to get pregnant will go back to whatever is normal for you immediately after you stop using it!"