Is It Bad To Skip Your Period On Birth Control

Number : Because Of Physical Or Emotional Stress

Skipping Periods with Birth Control

So theres this thing called the hypothalamus, which is a gland in your brain. If somethings wrong, your hypothalamus cant kick off the menstrual cycle, and you wont ovulate.

Characteristics that can affect your hypothalamus and lead to missing your period include:

  • Emotional and mental stress

  • Weight loss and low body weight

  • Deficient intake of food/eating disorders

  • Too much exercise

Researchers often see this happening in adolescent girls, where the common triggers are stress, weight loss, and excessive exercise. Girls at this time of their lives can undergo common life events that bring a lot of emotional and mental toll, like changing schools or becoming sexually active. Disordered eating during adolescence is also common.

When To See A Provider

If you are concerned about why you missed your period on birth control, it is important to speak with a doctor or healthcare provider.

There are many potential causes of a missed period, and only a medical professional can help you determine the cause and find a solution.

Some of the reasons to see a doctor include:

  • You missed more than one period in a row: While this can be a normal side effect of your birth control method, if it happens frequently, you should be evaluated to make sure that you are not pregnant or suffering from another underlying condition.
  • You are experiencing other symptoms, such as pain, excessive bleeding, or fever: These could be signs of a more serious problem and need to be addressed right away.

Missing a period can be a cause for concern, but it is often nothing to worry about, and is sometimes just a side effect of your birth control type.

However, if you are concerned about why you missed your period on birth control, tracking your menstrual cycle and talking to a doctor or healthcare professional can help you determine the cause and find a solution.

Safety Of Skipping Your Period

There are a number of reasons why you may want to skip your period.

Its generally safe to do so if youre on birth control pills. However, its best to check with your doctor first. Youll want to make sure that theres no medical reason for you to continue with your current menstruation schedule.

Taking birth control pills to reduce or eliminate your period is just as safe as taking them in the conventional way, says Gerardo Bustillo, MD, OB-GYN, at Orange Coast Memorial in Fountain Valley, California.

Menstruation isnt physiologically necessary. In general, women today experience many more menstrual cycles over their lifetime compared to women of previous generations, says Bustillo. There are a few reasons for that, including the following:

  • Many women today start menstruating at a younger age.
  • Women today have fewer pregnancies on average.
  • Women today dont breastfeed for as long.
  • Women today generally reach menopause later in life.

According to Lisa Dabney, MD, assistant professor of obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive science at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, the monthly period that traditional birth control pills allow for may have had more to do with marketing than anything.

When the birth control pills first came out, they were designed for women to get their periods every four weeks like a natural period, she says. This interval is really set up by the cycle of the pills and was set up that way so women would more readily accept them.

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Advantages To Skipping Periods On Birth Control

So is it necessary to have periods? In a word, no. The bleeding that happens with combined hormone birth control pills is not really a period the medical term for it is withdrawal bleed. You see, the hormones in the pill which suppress ovulation also cause the growth of the endometrium and when you stop taking these hormones during the placebo week this lining sheds and seems like a normal menstrual period. This isnt necessary for health.

Let me repeat: Taking a pill every day for months at a time is just fine. Decades of contraceptive use has shown that skipping periods on the pill is not only safe but can also have several advantages. For some women, the drop in hormones that accompanies the placebo pill week and period brings on bad menstrual migraines, mood swings, or endometriosis symptoms, and period skipping prevents them. For women who are anemic it can be beneficial to avoid the iron loss that comes with monthly bleeding, and skipping periods is great for women with bleeding disorders such as von Willebrands disease and hemophilia.

Does Birth Control Stop Your Period

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Most birth control methods make your period lighter, while others stop it altogether when certain measures are taken. With the pill, patch, and ring, you can choose to skip your period by taking the medication continuously. The implant and the IUD may cause monthly bleeds to disappear, but in most cases, they will make your periods much lighter and more manageable.

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Are Birth Control Pills Considered Hormone Therapy

No, birth control pills arent used as hormone therapy . The hormones in birth control pills are used to stop ovulation, so theyre at a much higher dose than the amount of hormones you find in HT.

The goal of HT is to get your postmenopausal hormone levels close to what they were before menopause. Typically, lower doses of hormones are used during HT. And the dose of hormones given during each HT session often varies depending on your individual needs.

Is It Safe To Stop My Period

There isnt really anyone who couldnt safely have menstrual suppression, Prager says.

Naturally not having a period can sometimes be an indicator of a health issue such as in people who have eating disorders, for example but if you intentionally and safely stop your period, it isnt risky, Prager says.

Pragers logic is this: 200 years ago, for example, women tended to have more children and so spent much more of their life pregnant or breastfeeding .

Modern people with uteruses have many more periods than people did then, she explains.

In some cases, using an IUD, shot or other form of birth control may be safer for someone than using birth control pills. While rare, birth control pills can increase stroke risk in some people who smoke and are over age 35, have high blood pressure, get migraines with aura, or have a history of stroke or heart disease.

While menstrual suppression isnt dangerous, initiating hormonal birth control can be uncomfortable at first, depending on how your body reacts to the type of birth control youre using. Some people experience mood changes like anxiety and depression, nausea, breast tenderness, migraines, weight fluctuations or other unpleasant symptoms.

For many people, these symptoms will go away within a few months. But some people may need to try a different form of birth control if their symptoms are too bothersome.

On the plus side, there are also benefits to taking birth control and stopping your period, Prager says.

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How Can I Delay My Period For Vacation

A prescription medicine called Norethisterone can delay the start of a period for a period of time. The doctor prescribes you three tablets a day, starting three to four days before your period is supposed to begin. In two to three days, you should begin to experience your period after stopping the medicine.

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Understanding How To Stop Your Period With Birth Control Pills

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A birth control pill cycle is made to replicate the natural menstrual cycle, with each pack containing 28 pills or 21 pills. In the case of 28 pills, 21 are active pills that contain hormones while the remaining 7 are inactive and without hormones. When youre finished with your active pills and start taking the inactive ones, that week of the cycle is characterised by withdrawal bleeding. If you want to skip your period, you need to avoid those inactive pills and start with another set of active pills right away. This means that you can control your menstrual cycle as and when you want to.

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Breakthrough Bleeding Can Happen

Let’s get the bad stuff out of the way first: The main problem with skipping your period is breakthrough bleeding, according to a review by the Cleveland Clinic Journal of Medicine. That means you might bleed or have spotting at unpredictable times, which can be a huge inconvenience if you’re out on a date, or anywhere you don’t have access to liners or pads.

Fortunately, that might not be an enduring problem, because according to the Mayo Clinic it’s more common to experience breakthrough bleeding during the first few months of menstrual suppression. After that, you shouldn’t have to worry about it as much.

Other than breakthrough bleeding, neither site lists any known disadvantages to skipping your period, other than the side effects you would experience on hormonal birth control anyway. The Mayo Clinic, however, notes that not all doctors think it’s a good idea to skip periods. The Cleveland Clinic researchers acknowledge the same, though they note that that’s due to enduring myths and misperceptions about menstrual suppression.

If I Skip My Placebo Pills Will There Be Side Effects

Skipping the non-hormonal birth control pills in your pill pack wont cause any side effects. The non-hormonal pills are just there to help you remember to take your pill every day and start your next pack on time. Sometimes the non-hormonal pills also have supplements in them, like iron, which can be good for your general health but arent needed for pregnancy prevention.

If you skip your non-hormonal pills and jump right to your next pill pack without taking a break, youll skip your period. You can do this every once in a while , or you can do it every month. Its totally safe to use birth control pills to skip your period, and it wont affect how well they work to prevent pregnancy. However, if you do this you may have some spotting, especially if you havent done it before or only do it every now and then. This is totally normal and safe.

If you dont take the hormone-free pills and instead just take a break from taking your pill on those days, youll still get your period. Just make sure you remember to start your next pack on time, or youll be at risk for pregnancy.

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The Pros And Cons Of Skipping Your Period

Sometimes, having your period can be an inconvenience, so skipping it can make life a little easier. “It’s not always fun to have a period and be traveling, or having an 80-hour workweek, or being a professional athlete, or even being regularly sexually active,” said Dr. Sophocles.

Skipping the humanmade withdrawal bleed might also be good for some individuals. Extended and continuous birth control methods have long been used to treat issues like heavy periods , menstrual migraines, and endometriosis.

However, healthcare providers are increasingly focusing on what their patients really want out of their oral contraceptionâwhether it’s fewer periods, more flexible bleeding patterns, or just solid pregnancy prevention. That last one is a big deal. Since no hormonal method is 100% effective, getting your period once a month is the reassurance many menstruating people are glad to have so they know they didn’t accidentally conceive.

If you do decide to try an extended or continuous method, know you might also experience some spotting, also known as breakthrough bleeding, until your body settles into a routine. Of course, if a cyclic method with a regular bleed still sounds best to you, that’s totally okay too. “It’s really nice to have options,” Dr. Micks said.

Birth Control Pill Is Nutrient Depleting

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Many patients are not informed of the numerous studies showing the nutrient depleting effects of oral contraceptives.

In 2013, the European Review for Medical and Pharmacological Studies called for all women to be on a multivitamin while taking oral contraceptives due to the known nutrient depletions, most notably magnesium, zinc, selenium, folic acid, vitamins B2, B6, B12, vitamin C and E.

Birth control depletes the body of folic acid, which is vital in many metabolic processes and is absolutely essential should you become pregnant. Folic acid is necessary to prevent neural tube defects in a developing fetus. Unfortunately, the critical window for folic acid in development occurs before the majority of women know they are pregnant in just those first few weeks.

Now imagine if you do become pregnant while suppressing your period youve depleted your nutrients, are oblivious to the early signs of pregnancy, and the damage has taken place before you ever realized you were pregnant.

And yes, pregnancy does occur while taking birth control pill.

It is the doctors responsibility to provide a true informed consent and guide women in understanding the pros and cons of the medical decision they are faced with. This is the only way in which women can make the best decision for their body and it is their right to know that while the pill may help relieve symptoms, it may also have unwanted side effects with long term consequences.

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What Are Some Options For Non

For anyone looking to prevent pregnancy without taking hormonal contraceptives, youve got plenty of options:

  • Condoms: When used correctly, condoms are 98% effective , but due to human error, condoms do have a 15% failure rate at preventing pregnancy.
  • Copper IUD: If youre hoping for another one-and-done contraceptive, the non-hormonal copper IUD, or ParaGard, might be the best choice for you. Its the most effective form of birth control and can last for 10 years.
  • Diaphragm or cervical cap: These two barrier methods can help prevent pregnancy when combined with spermicide . Like condoms, youll need to remember to insert a diaphragm or cap every time youre going to have sex. Diaphragms are 92%-96% effective, while cervical caps are only 71%-86% effective.
  • Sponge: Another barrier method, the sponge is 88% effective at preventing pregnancy and must be used every time you have sex.

So, if youre ditching your pill or removing your patch, know that your body is likely to transition back to its before state over your next few cycles. And if youre not feeling great, enlist your primary care provider , OB-GYN, some ibuprofen, or a trusty heating pad for support.

Can I Skip My Period While On Birth Control

Advantages to Skipping Periods While Using Birth Control

Decades of contraceptive use has shown that skipping periods on the pill is not only safe but can also have several advantages. For some women, the drop in hormones that accompanies the placebo pill week and period brings on bad menstrual migraines, mood swings, or endometriosis symptoms. So its not surprising that in one study, 53% of women surveyed reported wanting to skip their periods completely. Other women like to skip periods occasionally for example, to avoid packing tampons on a vacation.

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. Or, if you use the birth control patch or the ring, apply a new patch or insert a new ring for the last week of your cycle, when you would ordinarily go patch- or ring-free and have a period.

Bleeding While Using Birth Control

Even though it is clear that missing your period while on the pill is completely safe, many women still assume that this is somehow dangerous. This is perhaps because having a regular menstrual cycle feels more natural.

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How To Skip Or Delay A Period Using Birth Control

To skip a period using a traditional combined pill, a person must take active pills every day without interruption.

If a pack contains active pills and placebo pills, they are usually clearly labeled. Or, the placebo pills may be a different color from the active pills.

A person can continue taking active pills until they are ready to have a period. Taking no active pills for 1 week will trigger menstruation.

Some types of birth control pill suppress periods for a set amount of time.

Pill brands that suppress menstruation for 3 months at a time include:

Other methods of birth control also reduce the frequency of periods. Some examples include:

  • NuvaRing, a type of contraceptive vaginal insert
  • an intrauterine device, or IUD, that releases progestin
  • a progestin implant or injection, such as the Depo-Provera shot

It is generally safe to use birth control pills to skip a period. However, there can be a few risks and side effects.

One risk is breakthrough bleeding.

Breakthrough or withdrawal bleeding can occur after a person misses a few periods or more. The bleeding may look like spotting, but it can resemble a regular period. The timing of breakthrough bleeding is variable, and it may not happen in some people.

Some brands of pill are more likely to causing breakthrough bleeding than others. If this type of bleeding occurs frequently, a person should speak to a doctor about alternatives.

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