You want to avoid pregnancy that you don`t want and you think that now it`s the right time to evaluate your contraceptive options. Well, that`s great, but you are also probably wondering: “Can you get pregnant while on birth control?”
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What Are Contraceptives or Birth Control Pills?
It`s probably the first question about which you need an answer. First of all, birth control pills are drugs and don`t fall in any other category, but only medications that are hormonal composites, sexual hormones that are found in the human organism as well. The 2 hormones are estrogen and progesterone.
They prevent the secretion of sexual hormones by the human organism and thus, ovulation. In some cases, they can even prevent the implantation of the fertilized egg, meaning its fixation on the uterine wall.
What Are Monophasic, Biphasic, Triphasic Birth Control Pills?
Most contraceptive pills are monophasic, which means that an amount of estrogen and progesterone is equal during whole 21 days in which they are administered, but after this period there`s a break of 7 days that need to be taken.
Byphasic pill is similar to the monophasic one in the sense that is also administered for a period of 21 days and then a break of 7 days is taken, but the concentration of estrogen and progesterone isn`t equivalent, but the amount of progesterone is increase in capsules that need to be taken after day 7.
Obviously that the woman who takes these medications doesn`t need to keep records of them, but this difference in concentration is increased gradually later.
Triphasic pill is the most difficult to administer in the sense that the concentration or ratio of estrogen and progesterone will vary during the whole 21 days because it will be split in 2 separate categories.
While the turn from the monophasic to the biphasic or triphasic pill is made, the coloring is different, the pills being numbered to avoid any confusion, because in the case of biphasic and triphasic pills, there`s an order of administration that need to be respected.
Are There More Types of Such Pills?
Yes, there are many types available on the market, and they may vary depending on the additional excipients added to the capsules (pills), but also on the different concentrations of basic substances, contraceptive or sexual hormone.
Therefore, if depending on a ratio of estrogen and progesterone, there are 3 pharmaceutical categories:
- Under 20 mg estradiol.
- Under 30 mg estradiol.
- Under 50 mg estradiol.
Is It Possible to Get Pregnant While on Birth Control?
Experts claim that birth control has a 99% rate of success when used properly. A “proper use” means to be taken every day at the same hour with no exceptions.
With normal use, studies show a percentage of 91% effectiveness. Although these percentages are high, it may still be possible to become pregnant while on birth control.
The failure of birth control often occurs when you miss 2 or more birth control pills in a row. If the supply of hormones isn`t constant, you might start ovulating. If you may have unprotected sexual contacts, chances of getting pregnant increase considerably.
How Fast Is Their Efficiency?
Despite what it`s been said, this pill has a real efficiency of 95% – 97%, because it should also be taken into consideration the fact that some women forget to take them.
In case they are administered properly, the efficiency of thee contraceptives against an unwanted pregnancy is of up to 99%, but no pill can guarantee 100% efficiency.
Although theoretically there`s a possibility of efficiency even from the first day of administration, it`s recommended as during the first 7 days any sexual contact be avoided (regarding if any other contraceptive methods are used) because the efficiency is increasing.
The administration of these pills can start from the first day of the menstrual cycle (meaning the bleeding starts), and their efficiency will start later.
What I I Forgot to Take One Birth Control Pill?
In case you noticed immediately (meaning from a few hours up to 24 hours), take the pill you forgot as soon as you can, and then continue with the next pills but still at an interval of 24 hours.
Don`t double the pill, meaning don`t take the one that you forget and the next (the same day). You should never take 2 pills in a row, because the risk of side effects increases, but not the efficiency of the pills.
Don`t combine more types of such pills. Stick with the one recommended by your doctor.
Can I Take the Pill After an Unprotected Sexual Contact?
No! This pill is easy to be confused with the “second day pill.” These 2 types of pills are different and they shouldn`t be mistaken for having the same effects in the same situations. There are some pills that may prevent the implantation of the egg in the uterus, but it`s not really 100% sure this will happen, especially if the implantation already took place.
How Do these Pills Affect Fertility?
Although most prospectus of these drugs mention that the effects are minimal or don`t exist, it needs to be taken into consideration what minimum means. First of all, these pills need to be taken properly and not in a dosage that is too large in a long period of time. This means that total breaks need to be taken periodically.
Due to the fact that these pills have a large concentration of hormones which will inhibit the physiological activity of female sexual organs, it`s possible as at some point the physiological activity of these organs be inhibited so much that they won`t be able to return to their normal activity physiologically immediately after stopping the pills.
There a period of up to 28 days (meaning a complete menstrual cycle) in which the menstrual cycle to return gradually, but irregularly with small bleeding or other symptoms of gradual installation.
Are Birth Control Pills Dangerous?
Generally speaking, birth control pills aren`t dangerous whatsoever. They don`t create sterility, forms of cancer or other diseases. Moreover, women who have taken such pills for a lot of years, they given birth to perfectly healthy children.
However, be aware! Associating birth control pills with smoking is very dangerous. Such a combination significantly increases the appearance of cardiovascular diseases, especially after 35 years old. Anyway, there`s no doctor that will prescribe birth control pills to a hard smoker or any woman who cannot quite smoking.
What Is the Efficiency of these Pills Against STD?
Contraceptive pills offer no other protection than against an unwanted pregnancy. This is also the reason for which it was made clear in all previous questions that only a pregnancy can be prevented with these pills. They have no efficiency against HIV, gonorrhea, Syphilis, Hepatitis or other STDs from the long list of such diseases.
Are There More Efficient Contraceptive Methods?
Yes, the most effective method of contraception and with no side effects is using a condom (besides abstinence). This contraceptive method doesn`t have side effects, because it doesn`t interact with intrinsic mechanisms, with hormones or their metabolic system.
In addition, using a condom is the only method that ensures protection of 99%. The difference of 1% is due to the fact that a condom can break or crack.
There are also other contraceptive methods such as: IUD, diaphragm or spermicidal creams, but none of them offers protection against STDs.
Birth Control Pills vs. Breastfeeding
Although there is no protocol regarding this, it`s best to avoid taking such pills as long as you are breastfeeding. This is especially because during the first few months after birth, and especially when the woman is breastfeeding, and this breastfeeding means ensuring enough milk for the baby / 3 – 5 sufficient breastfeedings to the newborn per 24 hours.
During this period of efficient breastfeeding, the organism will automatically ensure a minimum of contraception, so it`s not really necessary to add any pharmaceutical contraceptives. But it must be taken into consideration don`t even breastfeeding alone won`t offer 100% safety against an unwanted pregnancy, but in most cases the human organism will ensure the protection during this period just as much as any contraceptive pill. – Check this out!
What Happens with the Menstrual Cycle During this Period?
During the period in which these pills are taken, they shouldn`t interfere too much with the menstrual cycle of 28 days, especially if they are taken for 21 and then a break of 7 days.
And then at a period of 3, 6 months (depending on what the doctor said), there should be a total break (of minimum 28 days) that needs to be taken to produce the total inhibition of producing the sexual hormones. – Read more!
During the 21 days, there shouldn`t be any bleeding; but during the 7 days, the period itself should occur and it`s possible to take 3 – 5 days. Even if this bleeding doesn`t stop, the treatment needs to be continued after the break.
If instead of the 7 days of break you`ll start a new foil, then practically the break period won`t take place, but rather a period of continuous absence of the period will continue.
13 Things You Should Consider When Starting a Birth Control
We all know that when taking birth control pills, there are rules to be followed strictly if we want to have a rate of success close to 100% in the attempt of avoiding an unwanted pregnancy.
“Read carefully the prospectus before starting to take this medicine,” it`s the first phrase that we always find on most prospectuses. But how many women really read the prospectus entirely, how many of them manage to follow the guidelines accordingly and, especially, how many women know the entire list of the forbidden things before and while taking birth control pills.
- Don`t look at the idea of taking contraceptive pills as a child`s play. Their usage is a long-term treatment which, if used correctly, don`t cause any side effects or infertility. So treat this seriously!
- Don`t start taking oral contraceptives without the prescription of an endocrinologist. A lot of times, the impression is that contraceptives are the responsibility of a gynecologist, but this is wrong. This is a treatment that involves the hormonal analysis. An endocrinologist will know which is the product with the right dosage for your level of hormones.
- Don`t start taking birth control pills without doing a series of special tests before being prescribed any type of birth control pills.
- These pills shouldn`t be taken by women with a previous medical history of blood circulation disorders, kidney or liver diseases, brain disorders, mild heart attack, heart failure, stroke, bowel disorders, epilepsy, angina pectoris, ashtma, lupus or vertiginous syndrome.
- You aren`t allowed to take birth control pills if you have a liver tenderness. There`s a sort of myth-rule that remained in the collective consciousness more than others according to which oral contraceptives affect the liver. Thus, a pharmacist will be able to recommend you a hepato-protective drug for each foil purchased.
- Avoid them if you suffer from lipedema, as it means you have a high level of triglycerides and cholesterol. Now you understand one of the reasons for which you need a series of tests before starting with birth control pills. These pills usually doubles the level of cholesterol, and adding an anti-cholesterol treatment may lead to liver diseases.
- Don`t use oral contraceptives to regulate your menstrual cycle on your own. Yes, it`s well known that these pills are an almost sure method of having menstruation during a proposed period of time. Still, avoid trying to control your menstruation days because you risk causing hormonal imbalances that may lead to serious unpleasant situations.
- Don`t take oral contraceptive pills if you had or have blood clots (thrombosis) in a blood vessel in your leg, lungs or other organs. – Learn more!
- When taking birth control pills, it`s quite risky to eat cookies and foods rich in sugar or fat. The increased level of cholesterol or triglycerides in the blood associated with these pills increases with up to 50% the risk of arterial thrombosis (blood clots in the arteries).
- Try to avoid beverages that decrease the effect of contraceptive pills, especially grapefruit juice or rattle tea. Use a condom if you didn`t managed to avoid any of them.
- It`s not recommended to keep the pill foil in the bathroom or other places with high heat or humidity. The composition of the pills may be affected and their efficiency may drop. Keep them in a dry location, where the temperature isn`t less than 15° C or above 30° C.
- When you forgot to take even 2 pills, you aren`t allowed to use the so called “emergency pill” or the “2nd day pill.” This type of pills contain a concentrated level of hormones, which added to the doses already received by your body through the pills you were already taken, may cause nausea, vomiting, strong dizziness or headache.
- If you forget to take a pill, take it immediately after remembering it, if it didn`t passed more than 12 hours. If you forget to take your pill for more than 2 days, call your gynecologist. Still, when you forget to take your pill and you want to have a sexual contact, use a condom for your own peace of mind.