For many women, the contraceptive pill, or birth control pill, offers an easy, convenient method to prevent pregnancies, lessen the symptoms associated with your period, or even help prevent acne breakouts. If you are considering taking birth control pills, you might be hesitant because of some misinformation you have heard while reading about this safe form of contraception. Here are a few of the most common myths associated with birth control pills.
Taking the Birth Control Pill Impacts a Woman's Fertility
Many women are hesitant to start taking birth control pills or will stop taking the contraceptive pills they are already on because of a concern that being on the pill can negatively impact fertility. In reality, if you are taking the birth control pill and decide you are ready to start a family, you can simply stop taking the pill and your periods will return and you can start trying to conceive.
Birth Control Pills Can Make You Gain Weight
Another common misconception is that if you are taking birth control pills, which contain the hormones estrogen and a synthetic form of the hormone progesterone, can cause hormonal weight gain. While it is not uncommon for some women to gain a small amount of weight in the first few months of taking birth control pills, this weight gain is typically temporary and as your body adjusts to the birth control pills, weight gain will no longer be an issue.
Birth Control Pills Are 100 Percent Effective Against Preventing Pregnancy
When taken correctly, birth control pills are very effective at preventing pregnancy. However, they are not always 100 percent effective, and the effectiveness is dependent upon several factors. For example, if you take a combination birth control pill, which is a combination of estrogen and synthetic progesterone, it near 100 percent effective, according to the Mayo Clinic. A birth control pill that features only synthetic progesterone is slightly less effective.
The effectiveness of birth control pills also depends upon a woman's ability to take the pill every day. Not adhering to a strict schedule of taking your birth control pills every day, or as prescribed by a doctor, greatly impacts the pill's effectiveness. If you are struggling to take birth control pills every day, you might consider a different form of contraception, such as intrauterine devices, IUDs, or a birth control implant.
There are many common myths and misconceptions associated with birth control pills. If you have any more concerns, contact your women's healthcare provider.