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4 Surprising Facts about Birth Control Pills

Oral contraception, also known as birth control pills, is said to be one of the greatest medical inventions. By taking a few amounts of hormones day by day, women now have control over their menstruation cycles. The revolution of pills led women to be free from the responsibility of childbirth and childcare, which contributed to the advancement of women’s placement in our society. 

45 countries allow birth control pills with doctor’s permission

United Kingdom, Australia, France, United States, and Japan are some of the economically developed countries that do not allow women to take birth control pills without consulting a doctor first. The country list is subject to be changed at any time according to the nation’s drug regulation rules. 

Minipills are not available in some nations

Oral contraception can be categorized into two groups according to the type of hormones contained in the pills: “combined pills” and “mini-pill”. While combined pills include both estrogen and progestogen, the mini-pill only has progestogen. The mini pill is somewhat lesser-known, and it is harder to be found than the combined pills. South Korea is one of the nations that has banned mini-pill to be prescribed as an oral contraceptive method. Both types of pills are clinically proven to prevent unwanted pregnancy. However, the number of failed birth control cases is reported to be higher for women who have been taking mini pill, which is around 13% annually

I am sorry, yes, Birth control pills can change your body shape

Recently developed oral contraceptives have significantly reduced the side effects of taking pills. 1st and 2nd generation pills contained too much estrogen and progestogen, which led to increased risks of abnormal uterine bleeding, acne, and weight gain. Gynecologists say that such side effects of previous birth control pills are rarely reported in newly developed pills. On contrary, a number of ladies have shared their stories of water retention and fluctuation of body mass. Physicians show their concerns regarding women’s phobia against side-effects caused by taking hormonal pills. They indicate that the risk of not taking birth control pills can result in more problems. 

Doctors are still arguing about the effectiveness of “Placebo-Week”

The answer to the question of “Is placebo effect really, clinically proven” is ambiguous. Yet, it is true that some birth control pills do include placebo pills, around 3-7 of them at the last week of the cycle. Is it that we have a pre-existing belief about the medicine that affected how it can influence our body? Or is it that our body was tricked by our mind? We do not know. 

Knowing what birth control pills are and how to correctly take them are imperative for women’s health. Therefore, ladies should keep talking to each other about such a crucial topic. I would like to continue the discussion about woman’s health in diverse cultural backgrounds. 

Jieun is a senior student at the University of Utah. She joined Her Campus as Utah Contributor in November 2020. In her articles, she shares beauty, health, and wellness tips. When she is not writing, she enjoys traveling, shopping, and trying new coffee flavors.
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