Birth Control Pills: How Safe are These?

Birth Control has been used for many years by men and women to prevent pregnancy. The most popular form of birth control is the hormonal contraception, otherwise known as the pill that needs to be taken every day. This method is effective up to 99.9 percent. It’s not 100 percent effective because there’s the possibility of missing a pill. Pregnancy can result even with just one missed pill. It’s also important to know that this doesn’t protect from sexually transmitted disease.

How does it Work?
A woman becomes pregnant when an egg that comes from the ovary is fertilized by a man’s sperm. This fertilized egg would attach to the womb of the woman. This receives nourishment and develops into a fetus. The pill contains a small amount of synthetic estrogen and progestin hormones that work to inhibit the natural hormonal cycle of a woman to prevent pregnancy. This means that the body will stop releasing egg from the ovary. It will also thicken the cervical mucus to prevent pregnancy.

Safety Issues
Women have always been concerned about safety as much as the effectiveness of the pill. Health experts and proponents of this form of birth control attest that it is relatively safe. However, many confirm that there are some side effects that can come with the use of the pill. A majority of these side effects are not serious. These include nausea, weight gain, swollen and painful breasts, spotting, lighter periods, and mood changes.

Now there is another set of side effects that people remember through the acronym “ACHES”. These include abdominal pain, chest pain, headaches, eye problem, and swelling or aching of thighs and legs. Although these are not so common, they are more serious and should prompt a woman to get in touch with the doctor. These may indicate an underlying medical condition including gallbladder disease, stroke, blood clots, heart disease, high blood pressure, and liver disease.

For most women, birth control pills are safe. However, women who smoke and are over the age of 35 are discouraged from using the pill. Along with that, you should stay away from this birth control method if you’ve had blood clots anywhere in the body, particularly in the arms/legs/lungs, serious heart/liver ailment, or cancer of the uterus and breast.

Any woman who is thinking of taking birth control pills should first consult her doctor. Make sure to inform your doctor if you have any first-degree relative who has had experience with the above mentioned health problems. On top of that, one must remember that pills cannot be taken with some types of medication. You also need to talk to your doctor regarding this matter.

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