LIFESTYLE & COMMUNITY

7 Side Effects Of Contraceptive Pills

Date February 20, 2018

Oral contraceptives (birth control pills) are a method of preventing unwanted pregnancies, based on the oral intake of hormonal preparations. Additionally, these medicines are used to treat dysmenorrhea, endometriosis, acne, premenstrual tension, and climacteric syndromes. Contraceptive pills prevent ovulation, which makes the fertilization of the egg impossible.

According to statistics, 16% of women of childbearing age in the US use hormonal contraceptives. However, it should be noted that these drugs have a significant number of side effects and should be used under the strict supervision of a physician. Below are the most frequent adverse reactions to the contraceptives.

1. Nausea

After taking the contraceptive pill, many women experience nausea. However, this unpleasant feeling goes away with time. It is recommended to take a contraceptive pill with a meal or before bedtime to avoid negative reactions. If nausea lasts more than three months, you need to seek medical help.

2. Headache

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Hormonal drugs increase the likelihood of headaches and migraines. An intense headache requires a drug change or a dose reduction. If the symptoms persist, you should consult a doctor.

3. Weight gain

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Clinical studies have revealed a direct relationship between the use of a hormonal contraceptive method and weight gain. Moreover, these medicines lead to fluid retention in the body, which, in turn, has a negative effect on a woman's appearance. Studies have shown that a woman gains about 2 kg in between six months to a year when using contraceptive preparations.

4. Reduction in sexual desire.

The hormonal substances contained in birth control pills can reduce sexual desire. If this negative reaction persists for a long period of time and worsens the quality of your life, it is necessary to inform your physician about it. In some situations, a completely opposite effect, an increase in libido, is observed.

5. Mood change.

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Medical research shows that taking oral contraceptives can lead to mood swings. Moreover, contraceptive pills increase the likelihood of depression and emotional changes. If you notice any of the above symptoms, it is recommended that you consult your doctor.

6. Fungal infections

It was found that the violation of hormonal balance leads to an increase in the likelihood of fungal infections (candidiasis, thrush). Chemical treatments (spermicides) can also have a similar side effect. People with diabetes mellitus are also included in the risk group.

7. Change in the nature of the vaginal discharge.

This is one of the most common adverse reactions. Most often, women observe changes in the color, smell, as well as the duration of vaginal discharge. If an abundant bloody discharge does not stop for 3 days or more, you need to seek medical help.

Like most medicines, oral contraceptives have both advantages and disadvantages. If you want to avoid unwanted reactions, the intake of these drugs should be under the strict supervision of a certified specialist.


This article is solely for informational purposes. Do not self-diagnose or self-medicate, and in all cases consult a certified healthcare professional before using any information presented in the article. The editorial board does not guarantee any results and does not bear any responsibility for any harm that may result from using the information provided in the article.