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Birth Control Pills

Many women use birth control pills. However, there are still misperceptions as to how they actually work. Amen Clinics explains the role of birth control and what women should do if they want to stop taking the pills.

Birth control pills are effective at preventing pregnancy as well as reducing the effects of menstruation. These include:

  • Pain
  • Cramping
  • Heavy flow
  • PMS

The pills are comprised of synthetic estrogen and progesterone. When taken orally, the hormones travel to the brain, where they shut down gonadotropins. These are the hormones that control the menstrual cycle. This, in turn, prevents ovulation.

It should be noted that synthetic hormones act quite differently than natural hormones.  With natural progesterone, the hormone binds to progesterone receptors. However, synthetic progesterone binds to other receptors, not just progesterone receptors. When this happens, a hormone imbalance occurs which results in side-effect symptoms.

Side-effect symptoms of birth control pills 

  • Inability to sleep
  • Feeling anxious
  • Depression
  • Gaining weight
  • Being tired

If you are considering stopping birth control pills there are several things to consider.  

First, if you are concerned about contraception there are choices available that do not contain synthetic hormones. Also, natural hormones can be effective for dealing with menstrual issues and don’t have the side effects of synthetic hormones.

When tapering off synthetic hormone birth control pills, note that the process takes several months. This allows your natural hormones to return to balance. This is important because your natural hormones were suppressed while taking birth control pills. It is also safe to use hormone supplements during this time.

Note that if you need to continue using birth control pills with synthetic hormones, ask your medical provider about supplementing with natural hormones.

Want to learn more about birth control pills? You can read the full post by Amen Clinics here:  The Truth About Birth Control Pills and Hormones.