There are two basic forms of Natural Family Planning (NFP).
The oldest form of NFP is ecological breastfeeding.
It is still widely practiced in certain parts of the world, and it is making a comeback in the United States. The key factor of ecological breastfeeding is frequent suckling. It requires no fertility awareness nor periodic abstinence. The term “ecological breastfeeding” was developed to sharply distinguish this form of baby care from “cultural breastfeeding” which provides little or no natural infertility.
The second form of Natural Family Planning is Systematic NFP and is based on daily fertility awareness.
It can be used both to achieve and to avoid or postpone pregnancy. When used to avoid pregnancy, the basic “method” is abstinence from the marital embrace during the fertile time, which is mainly checked by daily basal temperature readings and secretions.
For a much broader look at NFP, go to www.ccli.org, or visit these pages:
The Effectiveness of the Creighton Model Ovulation Method in Avoiding and Achieving Pregnancy
“Use Effectiveness of the Creighton Model Ovulation Method of Natural Family Planning”; Fehring, Richard J.; Lawrence, D.; and Philpot, D., Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, and Neonatal Nursing Vol. 23, No. 4 . May 1994. pp. 303-309
Natural Family Planning Research Database