How To Skip Your Period
Here is how to skip your period using birth control pills:
Keep in mind that some women may experience spotting or breakthrough bleeding at the same time when they would have had their period.
Is It Safe To Use Birth Control To Skip Your Period
Take a moment to do a little happy dance because, according to Dr. Shepard, the answer is yes, it’s totally safe to use birth control to skip your period. One simple way to do this, if you use the birth control pill, is to skip past the placebo week and go straight to starting your next pack of pills. Dr. Shepard explains that this is okay to do because the birth control pill is already designed to suppress ovulation and manipulate your natural cycle. “So the bleed that you have on a birth control pill is not a real period,” she explains. “That’s why if you skip, you’re not doing anything to your body because you’re never really having a normal cycle anyway.”
So, if you have a trip or a date planned and you don’t want to deal with your period getting in the way, you’re probably okay to postpone it. That said, it’s still best to discuss this option with your doctor to make sure you’re creating the plan that’s right for youespecially because there are multiple ways to skip your period with birth control.
Can Birth Control Pills Skip Your Period
Birth control pills can prevent pregnancy and treat many medical conditions, including diabetes and asthma. The pill works by introducing different hormones into your system, so your menstrual cycle can be affected by it. The bleeding may be lighter for some women, and it may be completely absent for others.
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How Do I Use The Different Types Of Birth Control Pills
Combination Pills :
As long as you take 1 pill every day, youll be protected from pregnancy. You dont have to take your combination pill at the exact same time every day. But taking it at the same time is a good idea because it helps keep you in the habit of remembering your pill. You can also use an alarm, calendar reminder, or our birth control app to help you remember. Most combination pills come in 28-day or 21-day packs.
If you have 28-day packs:
Take 1 pill every day for 28 days in a row, and then start a new pack on day 29. The last pills in 28-day packs of combination pills do not have hormones in them. These pills are called “reminder” or placebo pills they help remind you to take your pill every day and start your next pack on time. How many days you take hormone-free reminder pills depends on the brand of pill. Most pill packs have hormone-free pills for 7 days, but sometimes there are less. The reminder pills may contain iron or other supplements. You get your period during the week you take these reminder pills. Youll still be protected from pregnancy even if you dont take the reminder pills just remember to start your next pack on time.
If you have 21-day packs:
If you have 91-day packs:
Progestin-Only Pills :
How To Safely Skip Your Period On Birth Control
- Reviewed By: Shannon DeVita DNP, FNP-BC, CPNP-PC, Julie Lamonoff, CNM, OBGYN-NP
Growing up, you might have learned that women need to get their period every 28 days or so. This is often considered natural and necessary while skipping your period is thought to be bad for your fertility.
These beliefs have been shakenmodern-day hormonal birth control has now made it possible to safely delay your period.
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What Types Of Birth Control Pills Are Available
Finding the best birth control for you especially if you plan to use it to control the timing of your period may take some trial and error with your provider.
It can be helpful to think of the pill in four broad categories:
The minipill: This pill contains only one type of female hormone and is meant to be taken continuously. There are no placebo pills in the pack. The way it is designed means that many people who take it do not menstruate, but some still have periods and breakthrough bleeding. Also note that its not as effective as other pills at preventing pregnancy, but it can reduce heavy bleeding.
Combination pills: These pills contain different combinations of estrogen and progestin. Some pills contain the same amount of these hormones every day , and others vary the amount in an attempt to more closely imitate the natural menstrual cycle . These cycles include the placebo pills, which can be skipped to avoid your period.
Extended-cycle pills: These pills are designed to be taken for 3 months at a time before there is a scheduled break in the active pills. They are prescribed in 90-day packs, and there are no inactive pills in a pack.
Risks And Side Effects Of Skipping Your Period On The Pill
There are no health risks that we know of when it comes to skipping your period using hormonal contraceptives.
The pill itself may cause side effects, but they have nothing to do with whether youre skipping your period or not. Some women experience bloating, weight gain, mood swings, and low libido on hormonal birth control.
The one side effect that you may experience that is directly caused by doubling or tripling up birth control packs is spotting or breakthrough bleeding. Thats perfectly normal as your body adjusts to a longer cycle.
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Delaying Your Period With Birth Control Pills
Are you interested in having fewer periods? It’s possible with birth control pills. Find out how and get answers to common questions about using birth control pills to delay or prevent periods.
Traditional birth control pills are designed to mimic a natural menstrual cycle. A traditional pill pack contains 28 pills, but only 21 are activecontaining hormones to suppress your fertility. The other seven pills are inactive. The bleeding that occurs during the week you take the inactive pills is withdrawal bleeding, which looks like a period. This is your body’s response to stopping the hormones. If you skip the inactive pills and start a new pack of active pills right away, you won’t have this withdrawal bleeding.
The bleeding that occurs while you take the inactive pills isn’t the same as a regular period. Nor is the bleeding necessary for health. This is good news if you take birth control pills and want more control over your menstrual cycle, either for personal or medical reasons.
Delaying your period can treat or prevent various menstrual symptoms. It might be worth considering if you have:
In addition, menstrual bleeding is sometimes simply inconvenient. You may want to postpone your period until after an important exam, athletic event, vacation, or special occasion, such as your wedding or honeymoon.
Breakthrough bleeding usually decreases with time, but there are some things you can do in the meantime:
Your doctor might recommend a schedule such as the following:
Number : Do You Even Need A Menstrual Period At All
Heres a fun fact: Monthly menstruation isnt really necessary. In hunter-gatherer times, women were having babies one after the other, and they breastfed for long intervals, which suppresses ovulation and menstruation. Prehistoric women had about 50 menstruations, while modern women have about 450 periods!
With a 28-day cycle , the traditional birth control pill has no basis in biology. The makers of the pill decided to go this route to mimic the natural menstruation cycle to be more acceptable to society.
We know what youre thinking: Can I just take birth control pills and not have my period at all? The answer is yes youre allowed to skip your periods using birth control pills. You should ask your doctor if youre interested. We got all the information in our previous article on how to delay your period.
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If My Period Has Already Started Is There A Way To Make It End Faster
Sorry, the answer is no. Once the blood is in motion, nothing will stop it. You just have to ride it out. Your best bet is to think ahead and plan in advance if you know you want to skip over the placebo pills at any given time. You cant just skip it for, say, one night that you decide you dont want to bleed.
You Mean I’ll Never Have A Period Again If I Skip Over Placebo Pills Or Get An Iud
Well, not exactly. If youre using a progestin-only contraception, like an IUD, the disrupt in hormones will change the uterine lining and make it thinner. Many people have a lighter period or stop having a period at all when they have an IUD, Dr. McClellan notes. But if you have an IUD, you kind of have to wait to see how your body reacts to it. If your period gets lighter or goes away after a few months, it’ll typically stay that way once your body adjusts. It’s impossible to predict if your period will totally disappear, though.
Of course, your period would start back up once the IUD is removed. Nothing will get rid of your period for good.
With birth control pills or a method like the ring, if you don’t skip the placebo pills or immediately put your next ring in, you’ll likely get some bleeding again. A heads up that you might still experience spotting or other symptoms, like breast tenderness, even when you skip the placebo pills or pop a ring in it’s not always foolproof. So you may want to be prepared with a light tampon or panty liner if you’re worried about spotting at all.
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Why Isn’t This Talked About More
Dr. Shepard explains that, because the standard birth control pill is designed to have a placebo week, doctors will often just prescribe it to be used as intended, unless someone specifically mentions wanting to skip their period. However, it’s worth noting a long history in which information surrounding menstrual health has remained elusive. Not to mention that policing of the female body, especially when it comes to birth control, is nothing new, so it’s not all that surprising that the many options to skip periods and suppress ovulation aren’t super out in the open.
Just know this: People who menstruate may have a number of reasons to choose to not, you know, menstruatewhether it’s to avoid painful periods, gender dysphoria, or just make life a little easierand each reason is valid.
Learn More About Your Period And Birth Control
Every hormonal method of birth control has a chance of affecting your period, from giving you a lighter, easier period to helping you skip it completely. Our guide to birth control and your period goes into more detail on how hormonal birth control can affect your menstrual cycle.
This article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. The information contained herein is not a substitute for and should never be relied upon for professional medical advice. Always talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of any treatment.
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Will Starting Birth Control On The First Day Of My Period Stop It
You should have your period during your fourth week on the pill. When you start a fresh pack of tablets, your menstrual period will end. However, this does not mean that you cannot get pregnant while on the pill it is only because there are no new hormones in your system yet that prevents ovulation from happening again so quickly after your last period.
If you want to avoid getting pregnant but still need to take care of other health issues, such as diabetes or heart disease, we recommend that you see your doctor who may be able to prescribe you another form of contraception. Even though your period is off schedule, this does not necessarily mean that you are unable to get pregnant.
Number : Is It Normal To Bleed At All While On Birth Control Pills
The answer is yes scientists designed the pill so youd bleed during the placebo week. This was the one feature of combined oral contraceptives that scientists let remain unchanged over the decades.
That said, you will probably have unpredictable bleeding patterns during the first few months of taking any birth control method. The National Institutes of Health says that irregular bleeding can happen when you take hormonal birth control like birth control pills or IUDs.
Here are 3 ways to describe how unpredictable periods can be on birth control pills:
You may have your period on birth control during active pills .
You may have spotting, also called breakthrough bleeding, during the first few months. Doctors say this is the most common symptom when taking any brand.
You may have a missed period on birth control. But that doesnt automatically mean your pregnant.
This unpredictability is usually not forever. As your body adjusts to birth control pills, youll probably just have bleeding during the regularly scheduled programming when you take those sugar pills that have no hormones in them. But if youre unsure, its always a good idea to check with your health care provider about it.
But get this. Its not medically necessary for you to have this scheduled week of bleeding. Well explain more later.
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What If I Want To Skip Just One Period Can I Do That
Yes, you can if you’re on the Pill! Its pretty simple really: If youre planning on skipping that period you should take the pills up until the placebos and move up to the next pill pack in order to not get your period that month, Dr. McClellan explains. And if you want to go back to taking the placebo pills in a pack at some point, that’s totally fine.