There are many different forms of contraception, birth control pills and patches and intrauterine devices to condoms and diaphragms. Among these, the commonest measures to be used are the birth control pills and condoms or diaphragms. They are extremely effective almost all of the time, and the best part is that they are completely reversible; you can simply stop using them when you feel you are ready to get pregnant. Out of these many forms of birth control, we will talk about the advantages and disadvantages of the most popularly used: the birth control pills. Yes, disadvantages too, because even though these pills are generally considered safe and are sold as over the counter medications, they can sometimes pose risk to your health.
Positive effects of birth control:
First of all, we will look at the advantages of the birth control pills.
Reversible and effective
To begin with, these pills are extremely effective methods of contraception. They are effective almost all of the time, with a less than one percent chance of you falling pregnant even while on the pill. Even if you do skip an occasional pill once in a blue moon- which is not recommended of course- its effectiveness level is quite high. Besides, it is a reversible method; when you feel that it is the right time to have a baby, you can simply stop taking the pill, and no other step is required (except the sex of course).
Eases menstrual symptoms
Birth control pills affect your menstrual cycle in a very positive manner. Regular usage regulates the cycle and makes visits from Aunt Flo a lot more regular and smoother. This will be usually helpful for you if you have always faced period problems like late arrivals and lengthy or irregular durations. Birth control pills usually make your periods shorter and lighter, and reduce chances of menstrual cramps.
Boosts reproductive health
The reproductive system is significant affected by birth control pills. These pills function by preventing ovulation- the process of an egg being released from the ovary. Unfertilized eggs run the risk of leading to ovarian cysts, which can turn into a very painful and potentially dangerous condition. For this reason, birth control pills are a better alternative than condoms or other disposable devices. Women with endometriosis are also prescribed BCPs because they reduce the symptoms by preventing the illness to spread further. Birth control pills also help in reducing chances of pelvic inflammatory disease which affects the Fallopian tube and the uterus, and can lead to infertility.
Prevents ectopic pregnancies
Birth control pills are equally effective in preventing ectopic pregnancies. Women who are at particular risk of having an ectopic pregnancy, that is, the condition where the fetus grows in the fallopian tube instead of the womb, are especially advised to take BCPs. Condom or IUD failure will not prevent an ectopic pregnancy, but a few missed pills will work just as fine. Ectopic pregnancy is a potentially life threatening condition.
Negative effects of birth control:
All said and done, birth control pills can also have some side effects.
Some women report weight gain as one of the side effects of birth control pills. Sometimes, BCPs can lead to fluid retention, increased release of estrogen, or increased appetite. Weight gain can be related to any one or more of these three cases. Your breasts might also grow lager and become painful during the first months of your course.
Birth control pills are a kind of hormone therapy, and they work by suppressing the release of the hormones that lead to pregnancy. Since hormones are eminently responsible for our sex drive, some women might experience bouts of low libido. In most cases, this is present only at the beginning of the course with sexual activity returning to normal after that, but for some women, this might be more prolonged than usual. If t seems abnormal to you, see your gynecologist. You might also experience bouts of depression, irritability, or mood swings for the same reason.
Risk of clots and strokes
BCPs affect the circularity system in a minor amount. Studies have shown that women who take birth control pills regularly are at a slightly higher risk of blood clots and increased blood pressure, and strokes and heart attacks. These are, however, very small chances, but it is best to monitor your blood pressure closely for a couple of months after you start taking the pills.
It is important to note that birth control pills usually do not have any serious side effects. Women who have just started taking the pill might notice some side effects such as nausea, headaches, and digestive disorders, the same as taking emergency contraception. Serious side effects are extremely common. However, if you do face persistent illness after starting a course, it is advisable to consult a doctor without delay.