If you are on birth control or are considering getting on it, you should know about the long-term health complications it can cause. Nowadays, there are many different forms of birth control and all of them come with different side effects and concerns.
Birth control pills, for example, contain a man-made form of two hormones, estrogen, and progestin. These hormones are produced in a woman’s ovaries. Both of these hormones prevent the ovaries from releasing an egg during their menstrual cycle. Progestin also makes the mucus around a woman’s cervix thick and sticky, which prevents sperm from entering the uterus.
The patch works similarly to birth control pills. It contains estrogen and progestin that are placed on the skin and must be changed once a week for effectiveness.
The ring method is like both the pills and the patch. The ring is worn inside the vagina and releases estrogen and progestin so the vaginal lining can absorb the hormones. Rings must be replaced once a month.
The Depo-Provera shot contains only progestin and is taken every 12 weeks at your doctor’s office.
The intrauterine devices (IUD), actually have two different options, one with hormones and the other without. The IUD that releases hormones, contains progesterone. IUDs are inserted into your uterus by your doctor and must be replaced every 3-10 years, depending on the kind you get.
Lastly, the implant method is a thin rod placed inside your upper arm by your doctor that releases progestin.
While each of these methods all has the same end goal, that is preventing pregnancy. They all have their pros and cons depending on your lifestyle. However, unfortunately, these birth control methods can cause hormonal imbalance from the intake of unnatural hormones. This can cause an array of unwanted symptoms like…
Hormonal Imbalance Birth control alters your hormones which can lead to side effects such as acne and fatigue.
Migraines Birth control may worsen migraines or eliminate them altogether, this can be short or long-term depending on the person.
Breast Changes Many women report changes in their breasts, like tenderness or even enlargement.
No Eggs Some birth controls increase your estrogen levels and progestin, which stop the egg from leaving the ovary so there is nothing for the sperm to fertilize.
Vaginal Irritation This symptom is most commonly found in women who use the ring. This can cause irritation in the vagina and unusual discharge.
Mood Swings Due to the hormonal imbalance birth control can cause, it can have a huge impact on your mood and emotions. Many women report feeling high levels of anxiety and depression.
Blood Clots Your risk of developing blood clots can increase when taking birth control. Especially, if you are a smoker or have heart disease.
Weight Birth control can cause fluctuations in appetite and hormones, which are both correlated to weight gain.
Hair Growth or Reduction Depending on the person, birth control may cause an increase in unwanted hair growth or can experience a reduction in hair growth.
Regardless of which kind of birth control method, it is safe to say there is a risk of developing unwanted symptoms. Especially, hormonal imbalance, which can have a domino effect on your overall health. It is best to practice using protection and tracking your period to know when you are ovulating to prevent pregnancy.