If you’re like many young women who’ve grown up with a shady sex education system you’ve probably believed in a birth control myth or two at some point. Let’s not forget Mean Girls reminding us of our impending doom after losing our virginities.
1. “Birth control can cause infertility.” Once you stop taking birth control your body returns to its original fertility baseline. However, keep in mind that if you were on birth control for an extended period of time then you’d be much older than when you started. Fertility issues may arise because of age, unrelated to the birth control itself. Many women often misattributed post birth control fertility issues due to their lack of knowledge about their body prior to birth control usage.
2. “The pill makes you gain weight.” Any weight gain is usually caused by water retention, not fat. The side effect of weight gain normally subsides within the first two to three months.
3. “It’s unhealthy to use birth control to skip your period.” Chances are if your doctor prescribed you birth control pills it’s probably okay to use them to delay your period. One drawback of delaying your period may be breakthrough bleeding (spotting between periods.) Please keep in mind that should you get pregnant, you may have more difficulty noticing pregnancy symptoms.
4. “Your body needs a break from birth control.” Let’s start off by saying your body won’t build up immunity to birth control thus reducing its effectiveness. If you are a regular birth control user and haven’t experienced negative side effects then you’re in the clear.
5. “The pill is 100% effective immediately after taking it.” If you are taking a combination pill (containing both estrogen and progestin) and start within five days of your period you are protected immediately. If you are taking a progestin only pill you are protected after the first 48 hours.
Whether you’re just curious or contemplating using birth control I hope you learned something new. Thank you for reading!
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