Can You Skip A Period On The Pill

Whats The Point Of The Placebo Pills Then

Skipping periods: How can I skip my period on birth control? | Nurx (2020)

If a monthly bleed while on hormonal birth control is neither real nor reassuring, well, whats the point?

Its all set in history and tradition, says Dr Jane Dickson, a consultant in sexual and reproductive healthcare. The creators of the pill designed it to be taken with a seven-day monthly break, even though they knew it wasnt medically necessary. By mimicking a monthly period, they believed it might be better accepted by the church and other religious institutions.

Gynaecologist and devout Catholic John Rock, along with biologist Gregory Goodwin Pincus, tried to maintain as much menstrual normality in their invention as possible to ensure it would secure US Food and Drug Administration approval, which it did initially in 1957 as pain relief, then in 1960 for contraceptive use.

Today, when feminism has never felt stronger, many women remain beholden to a monthly bleed. But what if you knew the wage and promotion gap would be 15 per cent smaller, according to Italian researchers, if your menstrual symptoms and period-related absenteeism werent factors? In a YouGov survey in the UK, 52 per cent of women said periods affected their ability to work, and one-third of those said theyd had to take a sick day. In the Western world, menstrual symptoms are one of the main reasons girls miss school.

How Did Menstrual Suppression Come About

In 1977, the first study was published on an extended oral contraceptive regimen of 84/7 . This showed reducing the frequency of menstruation to every three months was safe.

Since then, researchers have studied the various ways the pill can be used to suppress menstruation.

Most studies show the practice is well-accepted by patients. An 84-day cycle is usually recommended, allowing four withdrawal bleeds per year. This schedule minimises the risk of endometrial hyperplasia, an abnormal thickening of the lining of the uterus, which is also a risk factor for endometrial cancers.

While the most common way to manipulate the menstrual cycle is through extending the days of oral contraceptive use, there are several other long-acting reversible hormone contraceptive methods that can be used to suppression menstruation for months or years. These include Implanon® , Mirena® , or Depo-provera® .

Read more:Few Australian women use long-acting contraceptives, despite their advantages

Is It Normal To Get Early Period When You’re On The Pill

You can experience both normal and abnormal vaginal bleeding if you are using any kind of birth control pill. Although the causes are different for different people, they might depend on the kind of birth control pill you are on. Knowing the reason for the vaginal bleeding is essential for deciding whether medical attention is necessary or not. Although early period on the pill can occur, it is a good idea to give a call to your GYN and ask if there is a need for an examination. Heavy bleeding for a long time while being on the pill is definitely a sign that something is wrong.

Read Also: Is It Possible To Get Pregnant While On Your Period

What Happens If You Take Qlaira Without Ovulation

Without ovulation, there is no egg for the sperm to fertilize which makes a pregnancy impossible. This is the main function of Qlaira, but the body is also reacting in more ways to give even stronger protection. Aside from stopping ovulation the mucous membrane of the uterus becomes thicker which is giving the sperm a hard time to get through.

The Basics Of Birth Control Pills

You can skip the sugar pills in your birth control, and ...

When you swallow birth control pills, youre ingesting one or more synthetic hormones. This could be a combination of estrogen and progestin, or just progestin, depending on the type of birth control that youre taking. These hormones work to prevent pregnancy in three different ways.

First, they work to prevent your ovaries from ovulating, or releasing an egg each month.

They also thicken the cervical mucus, which makes it harder for sperm to reach an egg if one is released. The hormones can thin the uterine lining, too. This means that if an egg does get fertilized, itll be difficult for it to attach to the uterine lining and develop.

Birth control pills are over 99 percent effective when used correctly. This means taking the pill at the same time every day. If you miss a day or youre late taking your pill, the efficacy can decrease. With typical use, the failure rate is about

Several different types of birth control pills are available.

Some are similar to the pill packs that were first made available in 1960. They included 21 days of pills with active hormones and seven placebo or inactive pills. When you take an inactive pill, it allows for bleeding that mimics normal menstruation.

There are also packs that allow for 24 days of active pills and a shorter menstrual-like bleeding period.

Extended-cycle or continuous regimens consist of a couple of months worth of active pills. They can either reduce the number of periods you have or eliminate your period entirely.

Don’t Miss: How To Make Your Period Flow Heavier

Causes Of Missed Period On Birth Control

There are several potential causes of a missed period when youre taking birth control. They may include:


Stress is one of the most common causes of a missed period. Research shows that women under stress during their cycle are much more likely to experience irregular or missed periods.

Stress has a significant impact on the hormones within your body. These hormones have the ability to create changes or a delay in your menstrual period.

Changes in diet and exercise

Any drastic changes in eating habits can affect your menstrual cycle. Diet can affect hormone levels and ovulation. If either are disrupted, you may experience a delayed or missed period.

If you are incorporating new or increased physical activity into your regular activity, it may be disrupting your menstrual cycle. Prolonged periods of intense exercise can alter your hormone levels, leading to missed or suppressed menstruation.

Weight loss

Significant weight loss can lead to lighter or missed periods. The presence of fat in your body can increase the level of specific hormones in your body. Losing dramatic amounts of weight will impact your hormone levels. This often leads to irregular periods and can be an underlying cause of a missed period on birth control.

Long-term effects of continuous birth control


Hypothyroidism directly affects hormone levels. Women who experience hypothyroidism almost always have irregular menstrual cycles.


Your Period Makes You Really Sick

Unfortunately, some women suffer from severe symptoms before and during their periods that render them incapacitated for a number of days each month. Heavy periods that are accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea are actually quite common. This is one reason a doctor may prescribe hormonal birth control, which often helps to minimize symptoms.

Your doctor may recommend taking a few packs back-to-back so that youre only getting our period 4-5 times a year.

Read Also: How To Stop Your Period From Coming Without Pills

You Can Skip The Sugar Pills In Your Birth Control And Choose To Have Fewer Periods

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Women dont have to have a period every month, doctors say, and its safe to use birth control pills to space out your periods to every few months or even have none at all if you choose.

The U.K.s Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare issued new guidelines on combined hormonal contraception which includes the birth control pill, transdermal patch and vaginal ring this week. This sparked a discussion online about why birth control pills traditionally included a seven-day break from active pills, if there was no health benefit to having that period as the guidelines say.

Those sugar pills were originally put in to mimic a womans natural cycle and make the Pill more socially-acceptable at a time when birth control was taboo, said Dr. Nicole Todd, an obstetrician-gynaecologist at B.C. Womens Hospital and Health Centre.

READ MORE: Birth control does more than prevent pregnancy heres why women use it

Although Canada has had guidelines on the practice since 2007, many women still arent aware that they can use birth control pills to have fewer periods, Todd said.

I think that there is still a common belief that women should have a period every month.

But medically, she said, they dont.

Now were giving women the opportunity not to have a period, Todd said. And thats completely safe to do so.

What Happens To Your Body When You Purposely Skip Your Period

Birth Control Pills: How do I skip periods with triphasic pills? | Nurx (2018)

According to the Association of Reproductive Health Professionals, most women will have an average of 450 menstrual periods during their lifetime. Additionally, according to a recent survey they conducted, over 80 percent of respondents reported adverse, period-related symptoms including bloating, moodiness, cramps, and irritability.

But there’s good news! Get ready to throw away your pads and tampons, because you can use hormonal birth control to skip your individual periods whenever you need to or stop menstruating altogether. You can do this on the pill by skipping your placebo pills every month, or you can opt to halt your period entirely with an IUD, injections, implants, and more.

Even if your period isn’t so bad, you can still suppress it for the sake of convenience. So if you’ve been approved for hormonal birth control by your doctor and haven’t had any problems with it, read on! This is what happens to your body when you purposely skip your period.

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How To Skip Your Period On The Pill

Its simple: You can prevent your period by skipping the placebo pills in a pack of birth control and starting the active pills of the next pack the day after finishing the active pills of your current pack, or by using a type of pill packaged for having a period every three months. Note that triphasic pills do not work well for period skipping.

Although the patch and the ring arent FDA-approved for skipping periods, many women do use them this way. If you use the birth control patch apply a new patch for the last week of your cycle, when you would ordinarily go patch-free . If you use the Nuvaring, leave your ring in for four weeks instead of three, then immediately replace it with a new ring.

Note that if you use progestin-only pills you cant skip periods in the same way, because there is no placebo week with these pills you are already taking an active pill every day. But women on progestin-only pills usually experience much lighter periods, and sometimes stop getting periods altogether.

A Scheduled Visit To The Gynecologist

Scheduled a pap smear months in advance, only to realize that it falls out on your expected period date? Its uncomfortable enough bleeding down there, but to have someone peering into your privates during your period thats enough to make anyone cringe.

Going to the gynecologist is a good enough reason for any women to want to delay or skip a period.

Also Check: Having Chlamydia While On Your Period

How To Keep Your Menstrual Cycle On Track

If you miss your period while on the pill and you havent missed any doses, pregnancy isnt likely. Instead, the hormones in the pill are likely the cause. If you miss a second period and havent missed any doses, pregnancy is still unlikely. At this point though, if youre sexually active, its still worth taking a pregnancy test or calling your doctor.

Your doctor can help you address any other factors that may be at play. After youve pinpointed the cause, you should be able to get your period back on a regular cycle. You may be able to do this in a number of ways:

  • Make sure you take time to relieve stress. Try breathing techniques, yoga, restorative walks, and even journaling to get at the root of your stress.
  • Eat a healthy diet and work to keep your weight in a normal range. If you suspect you have an eating disorder, tell a friend or your doctor so they can point you to the resources you need to get help.
  • Keep up with regular exercise. Your activity level may seem manageable to you, but see if stepping back a bit helps your regular bleeding resume.

Is It Okay To Skip My Period When I’m On The Pill Dr Evelyn Lewin Explains

Is It OK To Skip Your Period On The Pill?

This is what really happens to your body when you skip that time of the month.

Photo: iStock

This is what really happens to your body when you skip that time of the month.

This article has been checked for medical accuracy by Dr Evelyn Lewin

Youre on the pill and youre approaching that dreaded time of month: your period.

For whatever reason, having your period right now is the last thing you feel like doing. .

So, you wonder, is it okay just to skip it?

You see, there are two types of pills.

Theres the mini pill .

Each packet of mini pill consists of only active pills. That means you need to take a pill every single day youre using it.

Because of that, you cant actually skip your period when on the mini pill.

However, its a different story when it comes to the oral contraceptive pill

Thats because, in a 28-day pill packet, there are both active pills and inactive ones .

Just to clarify, the active pills are the ones that contain hormones and make the pill a form of contraception.

Those inactive pills, on the other hand, are mainly there just to keep you in the habit of taking a pill every day.

Its during those inactive pill days that you get your period.

But heres the thing: Because those inactive pills dont contain hormones, you dont need to take them for contraceptive use.

So if you get to the end of one active set of pills in a packet, you can just skip those inactive pills and move right along to the next packet.

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No More Intimacy Anxiety

Even if you don’t suffer from painful headaches or horrible cramps, your period can still be an unwelcome, unexpected visitor at the most inopportune times. What if you’re planning a weekend getaway with your sweetie, and don’t want to have to deal with your period while away? What if you’re heading to spring break, and you don’t want to stress at the beach? What if your honeymoon is coming up, and you don’t want to be menstruating during the most romantic trip of your life?

You can skip your period for that, too, according to the Cleveland Clinic and it’s totally safe for your body. Dr. Mercer affirmed this, telling me, “Different women may have different goals or reasons why they want to suppress their periods. For some, not having a period is simply convenient and easy .”

So it can make a huge difference to leave the period stress at home.

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