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Pregnancy Control Pills: Uses, Effectiveness and Side Effects

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What are Birth Control Pills:

Birth control pills are the pills or tablets that contain hormones. They help in preventing pregnancy and comes in a combination of the estrogen and progestogen hormones. They are taken orally by the women and is thus a way for both men and women to prevent pregnancy. The most common kind of birth control pills are the combination pills that come with a combination of the two hormones. Unplanned parenthood is often better not to opt for and some of them vouch for birth control pills as the safest method.

How Do Anti-Pregnancy Pills Work?

The bigger cause of concern is do these actually work. The simplest answer is yes, they do. They primarily suppress the ovulation, by preventing the release of the egg. Naturally, without the egg, fertilization cannot occur and therefore pregnancy does not happen. What these combination pills do is they make the mucus of the cervical muscles thicker thus inhibiting the entry of sperms or making it difficult for them to pass through. Women can take these combination pills like any other tablet, and when taken correctly, they have been reported to work 99.9% of the time.

What Should You know Before Taking Them?

Things to keep in mind before consuming pregnancy pills

We have a word of caution for you. It is the wisest and smartest choice to always consult your doctor before you consume them orally and our blog is just intended to give you a general insight into its mechanism of action, efficiency and general instructions.

1. Missing your period is not something to be scared of. It so happens that you may miss your period when you take these pills. It however does not indicate anything abnormal. As long as you take the pills correctly and regularly, there is nothing that can go wrong. At the same time, it is also not dangerous to not have your periods when you are taking the pill. What really happens is, your uterus lining becomes thin when you consume the pill regularly. It is natural if you stop bleeding because now the lining has become thin and you there is possibly no way you can bleed from.

2. Birth control pills work in two ways. The combination pills comes with the combination of estrogen and progestin and thus they are called as ‘combination’ pills. While the other kind of pills contain only progestin. But in both the kinds, they work to make the cervical mucus thicker.

3. Taking them at the right time has a huge role to play. Most of the effectiveness of the pill comes from taking them regularly at the routine time. Cases have shown how they work effectively in such cases, about 99% of the time. Birth control pills have also shown a failure rate of 9%.

4. It takes about 72 hours for the pills to start working. While some others will take roughly three to five days to start becoming effective and get into action.

Keeping these things in mind, there are certain ways to choosing the right anti-pregnancy pills. The combination pills and the mini pills are the two kinds of pills that are available.

  • Combination pills are tend to produce lesser cramps, with lesser and short periods. They are also known to reduce the chances of ovarian and endometrial cancer. However, these pills are not meant for you if you have estrogen side effects like nausea or breast tenderness. To help with this, you could consider lower dose combination pills, one that contains lesser estrogen levels. Alesse, Apri, Natazia, Ortho-Novum are some of the combination pills.
  • Mini pills are the ones that contain only progestin. These are the ones that will thicken the cervical mucus and thus thin the lining of the uterus. These were mainly developed for women who are sensitive to higher estrogen level. Mini pills are safe for women who are heavy smokers, or are at the risk of developing heart disease or stroke. The popular ones are Camili, Errin, Micronor.

How Should You Take Your Birth Control Pills?

Taking your birth control pills in the right time and the right manner has a huge role to play in its effectiveness. Here is how you could consume right.

  • Start consuming one pill on the first day of your periods.
  • Continue consuming the tablets every day at around the same time.

Remember, if you take your first pill within five days of your menstruation, you are highly safe. Thus, your protection is ensured right away. However, you can also take it sooner, even when your period isn’t time for another few weeks, the rate of protection against pregnancy cannot be immediate. At any point of time, if you experience discomfort or difficulty while on the pill or after taking it, always consult your doctor.

Ideally, your first day of your period is the right time for you to start having them. If you by chance happen to take them at any other point of time, your protection against pregnancy will only begin after seven days. Thus, it is okay if your miss your first day of the period, you can start any other time too!

The other thing you need to consider is storing them right. Keeping them in your car or purse is surely not the right way. Always store them in temperatures less than 25C/77F degrees or else they might start to degrade. While these pills sure might be hard to destroy, keeping them in hot or moist places will actually ruin their effectiveness.

5 List of Safest Birth Control Pills in India:

Here are some of the suggested and safest contraceptives available in the market.

1. I pill:

I pill is the most common brand in India. Reports have claimed a success rate of about 85-90% of the times. The success however depends on how soon you take it. The effect is the maximum when you consume it within 12 hours. You can also take it within 72 hours. Beyond that, it does not protect you against pregnancy. It is priced at 75 INR and is commonly available in all the drug stores.

Pros: It is hailed as very effective when taken within 72 hours.

Cons: It is meant for people in the age group of 25 to 45 only. You may experience severe cramps on your next periods and breast tenderness along with fatigue.

2. Unwanted 72:

It is a hormone based pill and does not contain estrogen. It was launched by Mankind Pharmaceuticals and is often described as the single dose single drug contraceptive that will keep your pregnancy at bay. It is priced at 80 INR for one pill and has to be consumed (one pill) within 72 hours after unexpected intercourse. It helps in keeping you free from nausea and other gastrointestinal problems.

Pros: It is known to reduce the short-term changes of menopause.

Cons: It shows flu like symptoms, vaginal bleeding before the date of your periods, breast tenderness and body aches.

3. Tpill 72:

the next kind of safe contraceptive is the T pill 72 that contains 1.5mg of levonorgestrol. The pill has to be consumed, as one single dose within 72 hours of coitus and is reportedly 80% effective when taken within three days of sex. It is priced at 69INR.

Pros: It blocks the progesterone effects on the body and is anti-nauseate.

Cons: It can sometimes cause uterine cramps, diarrhoea and uterine bleeding.

4. Preventol:

Here is another safest birth control pill. Preventol is manufactured by Hill Life Care Ltd. that has two pills with 0.75mg of levonorgestrol hormone. It is best to consume the first pill as soon as possible after unprotected sex and the second one, after 12 hours of taking the first one. However, taking just one will not help.

Pros: It is economical as compared to others and is priced at 50 INR.

Cons: Watch out for nausea and vaginal bleeding.

5. Truston 2:

Truston 2 is another safe contraceptive of 2 in a pack of one. It is manufactured by V care pharma Ltd. and the brand absolutely no side effects. The first pill has to be consumed as soon as possible after unprotected coitus and the second one after 12 hours of the taking the first one. It is priced at 60 INR.

Side Effects of Birth Control Pills:

Some of the side effects of birth control pills are listed below.

1. Nausea:

the most common side effect of taking birth control pills is nausea. Some of them have claimed to experience mild nausea when they consume for the first time. The effects are however seen to subside upon regular intake.

2. Inter menstrual Spotting:

You might experience breakthrough vaginal bleeding between expected periods. However, this is seen to reduce within about 3 months of the initial dosage. However, even during spotting, the pill is effective and there is no reason to worry as long as you take them correctly and regularly.

3. Headaches:

Headaches and migraines are another common side effect of these pills. Pills that have different hormones and dosage will show different symptoms. A low dose pill will effectively address this and can give you some relief.

4. Breast Tenderness:

Birth control pills usually make your breasts bigger and tender. However, this gets resolved after a few weeks. If you find lumps or experience persistent pain, it is best to consult your doctor.

Contraceptives are sometimes are our real saviour. They protect you against unwanted or unexpected pregnancy. But what you must remember is to consult a doctor before you start to taking them on your own. Any discomfort or any other symptom that you may experience could be an off shoot of these pills. While our article is only an insight into what contraceptives are and the possible side effects, they are in no way an informed choice that you can make from.