Today I'm going to give you the low-down on the contraceptive pill. So often, girls and women are put on the pill as a means of contraception without being given the full picture on the effects that it has on our entire body. Hopefully, this blog-post will help you to become informed & knowledgeable about the little pill so many of us swallow every single day.
Myth #1 - ✨OVULATION✨
Ovulation is the release of an egg from your ovary that will live for 12 - 24 hours before it dies. If you're trying to conceive, it is absolutely essential that you know when you are ovulating. Your window of opportunity is actually very small - there is only 4/5 days of the month when you are fertile!
For those of you who don’t wish you get pregnant, is ovulation still important for you!? ABSOLUTELY!!! The medical approach is "If you don't want a baby, then why does it matter that you're not ovulating?" But, ovulation also stimulates our hormone production i.e. our estrogen at the start of the month (which is amazing for ENERGY, SEX DRIVE and VITALITY FOR LIFE) and our beloved progesterone which is so important for mood, anxiety, sleep and helping to stop the horrible PMS symptoms we get before our period.
Newsflash: The pill STOPS ovulation completely - so no egg gets released. Not only this, but you are also sacrificing the production of your hormones too! Hands up who had this explained to them before going on the pill?
Myth #2 - ✨IRREGULAR PERIODS✨
"My periods were irregular but the pill regulated them" - sound familiar? As we now know - you don’t ovulate while on the pill, therefore your ‘period’ isn’t actually a real period and the bleed is from a drop in hormones when you take the week break!
The pill does not fix painful, heavy or irregular periods - it simply uses artificial hormones to mask the problem!
Your doctor is doing their best to help you and, unfortunately, this is the only thing that they are able to recommend. They don’t have any training in lifestyle medicine - the same way I wouldn’t have a clue on what antibiotic is best for your chest infection! We should be looking for more answers before we agree to take a drug that will mask our symptoms! Once we rule out common disorders like endometriosis and PCOS by getting our bloods checked, we can then find out why we are having symptoms. Stress, weight loss and low carb diets are just some other factors that would affect your periods.
Myth #3 - ✨PMS✨
Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) usually kicks in 1-2 weeks before your period, due to hormonal changes. Common symptoms include acne, tender breasts, bloating, feeling tired, irritability, and mood changes aka the joys 😆 . If you are on the pill and are feeling like this, what you are actually experiencing are withdrawal symptoms from stopping your pill on day 21 and not actually PMS.
As we know from above, you don’t make your own hormones on the pill, therefore these are all side affects of the drug you are on, aka, the pill. I think it’s really important that we stop using words like ‘period’ and ‘PMS’ when referring to the pill, as it falsely normalises these terms. ‘Pill bleeds’ and ‘side effects’ are more appropriate!
NOW, don’t freak out by thinking that you are doing some permanent damage to your body every month - you're not, as far as I know. This blog is simply intended to spread some awareness. PMS can be HUGELY helped with lifestyle changes - so there is absolutely no need to be suffering with it btw ❤️
Let’s start asking more questions and taking control of our health! ❤️