If ovulation is still taking place, then it is still possible to get pregnant.
During the perimenopause, periods can be irregular and it can make predicting ovulation quite difficult. Therefore, it is advised that women don’t use the natural family planning method and instead use alternative birth control methods, including:
- Hormonal contraceptives
- Patch injection
- Intrauterine devices (IUD)
- Barrier methods
- Male and female condoms
Hormonal contraceptives have some benefits during the perimenopause like keeping cycles regular, reducing cramps and keeping the risk of osteoporosis low. However, they can also prevent you from truly knowing whether you have been through the transition and can increase the risk of blood clots.
According to the NHS, all women over 55 can stop using hormonal contraception because the chance of falling pregnant naturally after this age is so low.
It is, however, recommended that barrier contraception like condoms are used even after the menopause to prevent sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
Taking care of your sexual health at any age is important but knowing your body and how it is working is also key to avoiding an unplanned pregnancy, even if you didn’t think it was possible to get pregnant.