Contraceptive pills cause hormonal changes in the body and this can cause several side effects. Every woman is different and thus, it cannot be said which pill would work for you unless you try it. These pills are used for reasons other than planned parenthood. They can also be taken to treat period irregularities in young teenage girls.

The reason they cause hormonal changes is that they contain synthetic forms of the hormones estrogen and progesterone. There are two types of contraceptive pills – combination pills that contain both the hormones and mini-pills that only contain the progestin hormone.

The following are the common side effects caused by the consumption of oral contraceptives.

1. Nausea

When first taking the pill, some women tend to experience nausea. This can be avoided by taking it along with food or at bedtime.

2. Headaches and migraine

Taking contraceptives pills may cause headaches and migraines. Different types of pills can cause different symptoms. Studies show that these headaches are less likely to occur with pills containing low hormones doses.

3. Intermenstrual spotting

Within the first three months of taking the pill, many women experience vaginal bleeding in between consecutive menstruation cycles. This could happen due to the body adjusting to the change in hormone levels.

4. Breast tenderness

The pill may cause breast engorgement or tenderness within the first few weeks of taking them. You should consult a doctor if you find lumps in your breast, severe breast pain or tenderness.

5. Weight gain

There has been no conclusive evidence of a link between weight gain and oral contraceptives, but fat cells do get affected by these pills. They don’t increase in number, but they do increase in size. Also, many women have reported water retention in the breast and hip areas after taking these pills.

6. Mood swings

Emotional changes and depression are a common occurrence when taking birth control pills. So, if you have ever been in depression, then you should talk to your doctor about it before you start taking any pill.

7. Vaginal discharge

Women may experience either an increase or a decrease in vaginal lubrication or a change in the nature of the discharge. If it decreases, you can use added lubrication while having sex to make it more comfortable. Also, those who notice a change in the nature of discharge can consult a doctor if an infection is suspected.

8. Skipped periods

Even with proper pill use, there are chances that you could skip your period. This can be due to hormonal changes, an illness or stress. If a few period cycles are missed or if you experience light flow, you should seek medical help.

9. Visual change with contact lens

As mentioned before, taking the pills can cause water or fluid retention which may cause the cornea to swell up. This could affect women who need to wear contact lens and you should immediately consult an ophthalmologist if you experience any problem with vision while taking your pill.

10. Change in libido

Your sex drive might get affected due to the hormones in the pill. This could be caused by other factors too. Do consult your doctor if it is worrying you.

11. Skin rash and acne

Acne and skin breakouts is a common thing to see in teenagers, as they have raging hormones flowing in their bodies. The same can happen when taking these birth control pills, as they cause hormonal imbalances. Some women also find rashes on their skin when taking these pills. 

12. Hair loss

Many women do complain of experiencing hair loss shortly after taking birth control pills. This generally occurs if baldness and hair loss runs in their families. It is best to avoid birth control pills in this case, as it does affect hair growth and hair fall.

Please do share this article with all the women you care about.


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