What is the rhythm method?

The rhythm method is a type of birth control. Sometimes referred to under the category of “natural family planning,” or NFP, this approach to birth control involves a woman monitoring when she is fertile and avoiding sexual activity, or using other types of birth control such as condoms, at that time of her cycle. The rhythm method is also called the fertility awareness method.

The rhythm method is not as effective at preventing pregnancy as other methods, such as taking birth control pills ‒ it is only effective about 76 percent of the time ‒ but it appeals to some women who do not like the side effects that are possible with other options. It is also appealing to women who have religious objections to using medical forms of birth control.

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