Hormonal Birth Control Has More Important Uses Besides Pregnancy Prevention


Hormonal birth control is one of the most effective ways to prevent pregnancy, but it’s also important to note that there are a lot of women who turn to this option for health reasons. These health reasons usually have nothing to do with contraception.

“I sometimes say to my patients that they shouldn’t be called birth control pills, but rather hormonal therapy with non-contraceptive benefits,” says Dr. Deborah Robertson, an OBGYN at St. Michael’s Hospital and assistant professor at the University of Toronto. “They need a re-brand.”

The reason is that doctors prescribe hormonal contraception lots of times for non-contraception reasons.

These include tempering or regulating the menstruation. The Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada reported that many women experience heavy menstrual bleeding (HMB) at some point in their lives.

This condition is characterized by heavy bleeding that lasts more than a week and high menstrual flow with blood clots.

For instance, a 29-year-old woman, Austi Whetten was diagnosed with von Willebrand disease when she was 16 years old.

This is a genetic bleeding disorder in which the blood doesn’t clot well. A hormonal IUD helped her regulate her menstrual cycle which was exceedingly abundant, and she was also experiencing horrible cramps.

“This discovery changed my life,” she said to Yahoo Lifestyle. “My periods are regular; my cramps are manageable. I don’t have the hormonal side effects [of the pill], and my flow is so light.”

Birth control can help with more medical issues

Here are some other health issues that birth control can improve: dermatological issues such as acne, as well as hirsutism, gynecological conditions, such as pelvic pain due to endometriosis, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), and bleeding or pain due to adenomyosis.

Experts claim that the use of oral contraceptive can also reduce the risk of endometrial and ovarian cancer, while some say that it leads to an increased risk for breast cancer.


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