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family planning: 66 results

Where in the World Are CycleBeads?

CycleBeads are available from Benin to Belgium, from East Timor to Ecuador, and from Uganda to the United States. Women in over 50 countries use this natural family planning option to plan or prevent pregnancy.  How do they get them? CycleBeads are ...

Natural Family Planning, NFP, Fertility Awareness - What Does It All Mean?

Natural family planning, fertility awareness, natural birth control, FAB, FAM - chances are you have heard these terms thrown around and may only have a vague idea of what they mean. All of these are terms used to describe basically the same thing - a set of practices that ...

Introducing iCycleBeads Online - Family Planning via the Web

We are thrilled to be launching iCycleBeads™ Online and our redesigned website! iCycleBeads Online is the only web app in the world based on the Standard Days Method® of family planning. A user receives a private internet account where she can easily track the ...

Thank you Melinda Gates!

In a recent TEDTalk, Melinda Gates eloquently outlined why contraception should not be considered a "controversial" topic and the importance of giving people everywhere access to a full range of family planning options.  Thank you Ms. Gates, for your willingness to lend ...

Side Effects, The Pill, and CycleBeads

Studies show that while the pill is the most commonly used contraceptive method in many countries*, a significant percentage of women discontinue its use, primarily due to side effects and health concerns. Women who discontinue using a contraceptive method put themselves at risk of an unintended ...

Health Educator Guli Fager – Giving College Students the Sexual Health Information They Need & Want

When Guli Fager started her job as a sexual health educator for university students in Texas, she was shocked to learn how little they knew.  While most students had basic knowledge about contraception, they had minimal understanding of reproductive processes and sexual health issues.  ...

What if I spot a little in the middle of my cycle?

If you bleed any time except when you are having your period, you should check with your health provider. But for many women, a small amount of bleeding around the time they ovulate is normal. Bleeding in the middle of the cycle should not affect use of this family planning method.

What do I do if I have a cycle that is out of range?

If you have a cycle that is either shorter than 26 days or longer than 32 days, you should make note of it.  A fertility calendar is provided with CycleBeads that you can use to keep a record, and the CycleBeads apps record your cycle history so you can always refer to it.  If you have ...

Can I use this family planning method if I have recently used emergency contraception?

Yes. You can use the Standard Days Method if you have recently used emergency contraception and your cycles are usually between 26 and 32 days long. However, you should wait until you start your next period before using it.

Can I use this family planning method if I am close to menopause?

Yes, as long as your cycles are between 26 and 32 days long. However, as you approach menopause, your cycles may become irregular – either shorter or longer. When this happens, this family planning method will not work for you.

Can I use this family planning method if I am breastfeeding?

That depends. Wait until you have had 4 menstrual periods since your baby was born. After you have had 4 periods, if your last cycle was between 26 and 32 days long, you can start using this family planning method on the first day of your next period.

Can I use this family planning method if I just stopped using a non-hormonal IUD?

Yes. A non-hormonal IUD has no effect on ovulation or cycle length. If your cycles were between 26 and 32 days long before you began using the IUD (in other words they were generally about a month apart), then you can begin using the Standard Days Method as soon as you get your next period.

Can I use this family planning method if I just stopped taking an injectable form of birth control?

Yes, but not immediately. If you have taken a 1-month injectable recently then like the pill, you should wait until you have 3 periods about a month apart (meaning that you have had two consecutive cycles in the 26-32 day range). If you have taken a three-month injectable, you will need to wait ...

Can I use this family planning method if I just stopped taking the pill?

Yes, but not immediately. Start this family planning method after your last three periods have been about a month apart (that means after two consecutive cycles are within the 26 to 32-day range).  You should use a back-up method of birth control until your fertility cycle returns to ...

Why is it important that my partner is willing to use this family planning method and understands ...

First it’s important that both you and your partner agree about whether or not you want a pregnancy. It is also critical that both of you understand how this family planning method works so that you can decide how to deal with the days when you can potentially get pregnant. For best results it ...

How can I determine if my cycle length is between 26 and 32 days?

A woman does not need a record of her previous cycles, but we ask a woman to answer a few questions that will help her or her provider to know whether or not she is in this range. These questions include: Do my periods usually come about when I expect them? When did my last period ...

How can I find out if the Standard Days Method of family planning will work for me?

Please take the Self Screen to determine if this family planning method could work for you. Screen Yourself.

Can anyone use the Standard Days Method of family planning?

No. The Standard Days Method works very well for women who usually have menstrual cycles between 26 and 32 days long. Women who often have cycles shorter than 26 days or longer than 32 days are not good candidates for this method. According to data from the World Health Organization, about 80% ...

Will the Standard Days Method protect me from sexually transmitted infections (STIs)?

No. Like most other family planning methods except condoms, the Standard Days Method does not protect people from STIs. If you think you are at risk of an STI, you should consult your doctor immediately to find out how you can protect yourself.

There seem to be a lot of numbers involved, how can I keep track of all this information?

We have designed a number of easy-to-use tools to help a woman use the Standard Days Method including CycleBeads, CycleBeads Olnine, and iCycleBeads smartphone apps. These tools each act as a fertility calendar meaning that a user does not need to worry about keeping track of any numbers. ...

How do I get pregnant using the Standard Days Method of family planning?

If a woman wants to achieve pregnancy while using this family planning method, she and her partner should have intercourse during her fertile days - days 8-19. Most doctors recommend that a couple should have intercourse at least every other day during their fertile days of cycle for the ...

How do I prevent pregnancy using the Standard Days Method of family planning?

If a woman wants to avoid pregnancy while using this family planning method, she and her partner should either abstain or use a back-up method of birth control during her fertile days of cycle - days 8-19.  She should also monitor her cycles and ensure that they remain in the ...

Why do women choose to use this family planning method?

The most common answer we hear is that women want to use this method because it is natural, effective, and has no side effects. Many women want an easy-to-use family planning method that is natural – that doesn’t involve hormones or surgical procedures. Some women are concerned about side ...

Which days are fertile according to the Standard Days Method?

The Standard Days Method identifies the fertile period – the time when a woman could get pregnant - as days 8 through 19 of her menstrual cycle. The fertile period identified by this family planning method is 12 days long because it takes into account the lifespan of the sperm (5 days), the ...

How is the Standard Days Method different from the rhythm method?

The Standard Days Method is very different from the rhythm method. While many people use the term “the rhythm method” as a vague term to mean “fertility awareness” or “natural family planning” in general, the technical definitions of “the rhythm method” are complex. The "rhythm method" ...

How was the Standard Days Method Developed and Tested?

To develop this family planning method, researchers at the Institute for Reproductive Health created a computer model, based on data from the World Health Organization, and determined that women who usually have menstrual cycles between 26 and 32 days long are potentially fertile – or able to ...

What tools exist to help a woman use the Standard Days Method of family planning?

There are a few different tools that a woman can use to follow this family planning method: CycleBeads – CycleBeads is a string of 32 color-coded beads that a woman can use to track her cycle, and identify if she is on a day when pregnancy is likely or not. This tool is used by women all ...

How effective is this family planning method?

In studies conducted by the Institute for Reproductive Health, the Standard Days Method was found to be more than 95% effective at preventing pregnancy. That means that, out of 100 women using the method for 1 year, fewer than 5 of them would get pregnant if they used the method correctly. The ...

What is the Standard Days Method?

The Standard Days Method is a simple natural method of family planning that was developed by the Institute for Reproductive Health at Georgetown University. The method is based on a fixed formula which indicates that women with cycles between 26 and 32 days long, are potentially fertile on days ...

Birth Control and Beyond – The Many Uses of CycleBeads

“It’s birth control, but with a lot of other uses.” - health provider CycleBeads is an effective birth control option and while preventing pregnancy is the primary use of this family planning tool, health providers have shared a number of other interesting ways it can be used to educate, ...

Family Planning in the Philippines – Successfully Avoiding Pregnancy with CycleBeads

As mentioned in a previous article on family planning in the Philippines, birth control and sex education in this Catholic country can be difficult to come by. To combat this problem, one city started requiring family planning courses for all couples planning to get married. In Marakina City ...

Family Planning with Beads?

We’ve heard it all… Is this jewelry? Should I wear CycleBeads® around my neck? Are these rosary beads? And even a few responses that aren’t quite fit for print. So why did we decide to use beads to help women use the Standard Days Method® of family planning?

iCycleBeads™ Smartphone Apps

Easy and effective natural family planning is now available through your smartphone with iCycleBeads™. The iCycleBeads™ smartphone apps enable women to plan or prevent pregnancy easily and effectively entirely with information provided by their phones or other mobile devices.

CycleBeads® Online

30 Day Risk Free TrialEasy and effective natural family planning is now available online with the new CycleBeads web app, the only web app in the world based on the Standard Days Method® of family planning. This innovative family planning service can be used as birth control or to plan a pregnancy ...

How to Keep Using Natural Family Planning When Traveling to Different Timezones

With the holidays here you may be wondering how to keep using your natural family planning method if you are traveling – especially if you’ll be in a new timezone. The answer depends on what type of natural family planning method you are using. Some are very easy to use while traveling, and ...

CycleBeads® Online – Plan or Prevent Pregnancy via the Web

    Easy and effective natural family planning is now available online with the new CycleBeads® Online service. CycleBeads Online is the only web app in the world based on the Standard Days Method® of family planning; the most effective natural family planning method in typical use. This innovative service can be used as birth control or to plan a pregnancy easily and ...

CycleBeads®

        CycleBeads® – The Original Family Planning Tool  A hands-on visual tool used by millions of women worldwide, CycleBeads is the original way to identify your fertile days using the Standard Days Method® of family planning. CycleBeads is a color-coded string of beads representing a woman's menstrual cycle. It helps a woman track her ...

Period Tracker App for IPhone & Android

iCycleBeads™ smartphone apps enable a woman to use the Standard Days Method® of family planning through her iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad or Android phone. These are the only smartphone apps in the world based on this highly effective, well researched family planning method. It's more than just a period tracker app, iCycleBeads lets you plan or prevent pregnancy easily and effectively with your ...

Family Planning in Calcutta – Helping Women with Easy, Effective Natural Methods

We recently heard from Dr Deirdre Gleeson, the Medical Director of Medwise, Occupational Health Services in Ireland. Dr. Gleeson wrote to us describing her work in Calcutta and her efforts to help empower women living in extremely difficult circumstances. In Dr. Gleeson’s own words…

Let’s Talk About Sex – College Students & Sexual Health

Believe it or not, college students are often hesitant to talk about their sex lives, but health educators need them to do exactly that in order to provide students with the best health services. We spoke with Katie Garcia, health educator at Vanderbilt University, to find out how she gets ...

What Are the Challenges in Offering Natural Birth Control Options?

Much of the information below was originally posted in an earlier article “Why Aren’t Doctors Offering Natural Family Planning Options?”, but given the amount of incorrect and biased information that exists around natural family planning, we think it’s useful to revisit.

New Research Article Now Available: Shows Couples are Likely to Keep Using the Standard Days Method of Family Planning and Use it Effectively

Here it is! The article in the October issue of the Journal of Family Planning and Reproductive Health Care that describes the recent study that shows couples are very likely to keep using the Standard Days Method of family planning as well as CycleBeads long term, and that the ...

New Study Shows Couples Are Highly Satisifed with the Standard Days Method as their Family Planning Option and It’s Even More Effective with Use

A new study to be published in the October issue of the Journal of Family Planning and Reproductive Health Care finds that couples who used the Standard Days Method® of family planning to prevent pregnancy are very likely to continue using this method along with the visual tool CycleBeads®. The ...

Family Planning is a Joint Effort – A Couple’s Partnership in the Philippines

A True Partnership Melanie and Levan are happy. Married for years, and co-owners of a school canteen in the Phillipines’ Marakina City, this husband and wife are partners in every sense of the word. Together, they raise three children, manage a business and even collaborate on family ...

Offering CycleBeads in Haiti After the Earthquake – One Midwife’s Story

Many healthcare providers traveling to developing countries have found CycleBeads® to be a useful educational tool and family planning option during their medical missions.  Below is the story of one midwife’s experience in Haiti and how she used CycleBeads during her trip.

iCycleBeads Family Planning App Now Available on Android Phones

July 27, 2011 WASHINGTON, D.C. – Cycle Technologies launched iCycleBeads™ on the Android platform. iCycleBeads is the first application that enables a woman to plan or prevent pregnancy easily and effectively, entirely through information provided by her phone.  iCycleBeads is the only ...

CycleBeads is Not the Rhythm Method – Part II

Well we’ve said it before, but CycleBeads and the Standard Days Method of family planning are not the rhythm method! There is a lot of information in the earlier CycleBeads is Not the Rhythm Method post, but sometimes a picture is worth a 1000 words…

Making Family Planning Available to Everyone, Everywhere

iCycleBeads:  Family Planning iPhone Application Now Available in Spanish March 24, 2011 WASHINGTON, D.C. – Cycle Technologies, announced today that iCycleBeads™, the first iPhone application that enables a woman to plan or prevent pregnancy easily and effectively, entirely through ...

Can Health Clinics Address a Need with Fertility Awareness-Based Family Planning?

It’s pretty common knowledge these days that there are high rates of both contraceptive discontinuation and unintended pregnancies in the U.S. Could increasing the availability of fertility awareness-based family planning options at family planning clinics help address these issues by meeting ...

Communicating a Woman’s Cycle to Her Male Partner Yields Big Benefits

We’ve been investigating how a woman’s cycle affects male-female relationships and have found that when a woman is accurately informed about what is going on with her body and can clearly communicate it to her partner, it enhances the relationship overall. Sounds easy enough, but what is a good ...

The Menstrual Cycle: Do Men Really Want to Know?

In our last post, “Can a Woman’s Cycle Affect Her Relationships with Men?” we looked at how a woman’s cycle impacts her most intimate relationships. It’s clear that a woman’s menstrual cycle does affect her male partner. But are men really interested in understanding how a woman’s cycle works? ...

Can A Woman’s Cycle Affect Her Relationships with Men?

The menstrual cycle has long been considered a “woman’s issue”. This seems logical, since only women have a menstrual cycle, but a woman’s cycle can also significantly affect her partner’s life and the dynamics in general between a man and a woman. There are the obvious monthly occurrences, such ...

Family Planning via Cell Phones

Exciting research is being conducted by the Institute for Reproductive Health on offering the Standard Days Method™ of family planning through mobile phones. As an information-based, natural family planning method, the Standard Days Method is ideally suited for offering in this manner. The ...

“Birth Control Over Baldness”?

In a recent New York Times Op-Ed piece, "Birth Control Over Baldness" Nicholas Kristof points out that research on contraception is "pitifully underfunded” and argues that family planning is treated less seriously than baldness. He further points out that new contraceptives will ...

CycleBeads is Not the Rhythm Method

We occasionally hear the question “isn't CycleBeads just the rhythm method?" The answer is NO. CycleBeads, and the Standard Days Method on which it is based, are very different from the so-called “rhythm method”, a method which is vaguely understood, not well defined, confusing to use, ...

New Study Shows Men Are Key Influencers in Birth Control Use

A new study shows that young women who aren’t trying to get pregnant are more than twice as likely to use birth control when their partners are "very" in favor of it.

One Size Fits All in Birth Control?

No. One size does not fit all when it comes to birth control. Research shows that the more contraceptive options available, the greater prevalence of birth control use in general and the lower the rate of unplanned pregnancies.

Birth Control Effectiveness: How Risky is Your Birth Control?

Many people are surprised to find out that their chosen method of birth control is not quite as effective as they may think. They’ll ask, “If the Pill is 99.9% effective, how come I got pregnant?” When talking about birth control effectiveness, there are two rates to consider: Perfect Use and ...

CycleBeads

The CycleBeads family of products are based on the Standard Days Method®, the most effective natural family planning method available. CycleBeads, CycleBeads Online, and iCycleBeads smartphone apps help a woman to track her period, and accurately identify which days pregnancy is ...

How this family planning method works

How Does the Standard Days Method of Family Planning Work? The Standard Days Method® is a fertility awareness-based family planning method that identifies a fixed fertile window for women with cycles that are between 26 and 32 days long. For women with cycles in this range, the ...

Research

CycleBeads® and iCycleBeads apps are based on a natural family planning method called the Standard Days Method®. This method was developed by the Institute for Reproductive Health at Georgetown University to fulfill the need for an effective, easy to use, natural birth control ...

International Partners

We are working to make CycleBeads available to women and couples around the world. Currently CycleBeads are available in more than 50 countries through NGO's, Ministries of Health, healthcare providers, and retailers. The list below includes many of our international partners. If you ...

How to Use iCycleBeads Online

Getting Started To get started, follow these steps: 1) Set your timezone. This will activate emails alerting you to key days of your cycle. 2) Check that the date and time on the device(s) that you will use to access your CycleBeads Online account, are accurate.This ...

Ovulation Questions

Ovulation Ovulation is the release of an egg from a woman’s ovary, and occurs each month for most women. If the released egg is fertilized and successfully implants, it results in a pregnancy.  When is Ovulation? When is ovulation exactly? This can be ...

Plan Pregnancy

Want To Get Pregnant Fast? Know Your Days. There are only six days during any cycle when a woman can get pregnant - the five days leading up to ovulation and the 24 hours after ovulation. This is because sperm can live for up to 5 days in a woman's body, and the ovum lives for only 12-24 ...

Prevent & Avoid Pregnancy

How Do I Prevent Pregnancy Using this Family Planning Method? To prevent pregnancy using CycleBeads, a woman should avoid having unprotected intercourse on days 8-19 of her cycle, where the start of her cycle, Day 1, is the first day of her period. This means that during the days when she is ...