Birth Control Pill for Men

By J. Troha (Photographer) [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

If you were a man, would you be willing to pop a pill every morning to control your sperm count? Or do you feel birth control is an entirely female responsibility? Popping a birth control pill is something millions of women do each day to prevent pregnancy and up until now men were extremely limited in what choices they had for contraception. Yet, according to a research study conducted by the Monash University in Australia, men may soon have access to a male birth control pill.

Male Birth Control Pill

The research study done by Monash University was performed on mice and it’s going to be a few years before a viable male contraceptive pill will be available for men. Still, medical science is fairly convinced it’s possible, but it presents more of a challenge than birth control pills for women. As you can only imagine, creating an effective male birth control pill would have to theoretically stop millions and millions of sperm cells, whereas a female birth control pill only has to stop the release of ONE egg.

How Would it Work?

A birth control pill for men wouldn’t work by blocking the sperm, rather researchers are trying to stop the transportation of it. When a man is close to climaxing, hormones are released and captured by muscle spasms that sends the sperm propelling into the vagina. Ideally, what researchers hope to accomplish is to stop the muscle contractions that propel sperm, but up until now these attempts have only resulted in decreasing a man’s fertility.

Male Birth Control Options

Birth control is a common concern for men and women and while women have many options to choose from for preventing pregnancy, men have far less. A man can use abstinence, condoms, withdrawal (not an effective method), outercourse (no penile penetration) and vasectomy. Men and their partners can also prevent pregnancy by engaging in fertility awareness based methods. Fertility awareness involves a female keeping track of her menstrual cycles, cervical mucus consistency and basal body temperature charting.

Practicing fertility awareness means a woman and man can have unprotected sex during certain times of the month, when she is less fertile. However, these methods are not 100% effective against preventing pregnancy.

Another Option

Because the male birth control studies have thus far yielded unsuccessful results, it’s worth mentioning another option for men. Vasalgel is a reversible form of male birth control that works by blocking the vas deferens glands. The new male birth control option is about ready to enter human trials and takes men one step closer to taking control over their reproductive health.

Our society has changed the way it views relationships, sex and reproduction. Women have historically always had more options when it came to controlling their reproductive abilities, while men had very few. However, it’s disturbing to think there has been no improvements or advancements made in the field of non-barrier birth control options for men. The current options are condoms and vasectomies, that’s it. Men should have access to a birth control pill, not only for their own benefit, but it would also help take away the stigmatizing of women who use the pill.


 
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