What is the birth control pill?
The birth control pill (also called “the Pill”) is a birth control method that includes a combination of an estrogen (estradiol) and progestogen (progestin) to prevent pregnancy. If taken correctly, the pill is a very effective (meaning it works really well) at preventing pregnancy. Although there a lot of different types of pills, they all work the same way. They vary by brand or by the amount of hormones in them. If you are interested in the pill, talk to your clinician about which one might be the best option for you. And if you’ve tried the pill before and didn’t like it for a reason other than forgetting to take it, talk to your clinician about the other types of pills available.
There is a pill that is progestin only – called the mini pill. The mini pill has slightly different instructions than what is listed below. If you are using the mini pill, please discuss proper usage instructions with your clinician or pharmacist.
How does the birth control pill work?
The pill works by “telling” the ovaries not to release an egg (called ovulation). If no egg is released, there is nothing for sperm to fertilize (the fertilization of an egg by sperm results in pregnancy). However, if a pill is forgotten or missed the ovaries don’t get the message (and may release an egg) making pregnancy possible if there has been recent unprotected sex (sex without a condom).
How to use the birth control pill:
The birth control pill is most effective (works the best) when taken every day around the same time of day – the first week is especially important. A typical pill pack has 28 pills – 21 of those pills contain hormones and the other 7 do not. It’s during those 7 non-hormonal pills that most women get their period (however, some women may or may not bleed the entire 7 days). Regardless of whether or not you are still bleeding, start a new pack only when the 7 days of non-hormonal pills are complete. No sooner and no later.
*Every pack looks a bit different. Some are round. Some are square. Some are rectangular. Make sure you talk to your clinician or pharmacist about which pills are the active pills (the pills with hormones) and which are the non-active pills (the non-hormonal pills taken during the week in which you can expect your period). Also, not everyone starts their new pack on a Sunday. Whatever day you choose to start, be sure it’s the same day every month (meaning, if you start a new pack on Tuesday, every new pack thereafter will start on a Tuesday).
What to do if a pill or two are missed:
It’s common to forget a pill from time to time (if you forget often, you might want to consider switching birth control methods). Knowing what to do if that happens can help prevent an unplanned pregnancy. Here are some general instructions on what to do if you forget a pill or two.
Number of Pills Missed
When Pills Missed
What to do …
“Should I use condoms?
First 1 pill
Beginning of pack
(This means you may take two pills in one day.)
Yes, use condoms for 1 week.
First week of pack
(This means you may take two pills in one day.)
Yes, use condoms for 1 week.
2nd and 3rd week of pack
For example, if you forget pills on Monday & Tuesday, you would take 2 pills on Wednesday & 2 pills on Thursday.
3 or more pills
Any time in pack
*If you use Family Pact, you can only pick up 3 packs of pills every 3 months. If you throw away a pack and start a new one because of missed pills, you will not have enough pills/packs to last until your next refill. If this is the case, please call New Generation Health Center. We have pills on site that we can give to you.
Yes, use condoms for 1st week of new pack.
I know this was A LOT of information. If you have any questions, you are always welcome to comment, send an email to email@example.com, call or make an appointment at New Gen (415.502.8336).
In happiness & health,
Reviewed by Kohar Der Simonian, MD
It’s Halloween and for many of you that means awesome parties! I want to give you a few tips to stay safe while still having fun!
Transportation is a HUGE piece of the going out puzzle. PLAN AHEAD about how you will get around. Public transportation is great, especially if you will be drinking (more on that next). Make sure you have enough money for the bus or for Bart and be sure to keep track of the time so you don’t miss the last bus/train (set a timer on your phone). Or stash a bit of money away for a cab at the end of the night (keep in mind; it can be tough to get a cab in the city on Halloween night). And if driving is a must, make sure that whoever is driving DOES NOT DRINK AT ALL. It only takes one drink to impair someone’s driving. I know that nobody ever thinks an accident will happen to them, but it does. If you can, plan for someone to pick you up (parents, older siblings, friends who are not going out, etc.). Whatever you do, be extra safe. All modes of transportation can be a little more dangerous during the holidays.
The first thing many people associate parties with is drinking. Although some of you probably aren’t old enough to drink, I know that may not stop you. I could give you a million and one reasons why you shouldn’t drink (believe me, there are many) but instead I will give you a few tips about drinking as safely as possible. These tips apply to the 21 & over drinkers too!
1. Before you go out, think about and decide how much you will drink. Establishing guidelines before you go out will help you stay aware of how much you are actually drinking. Also, if you are going somewhere you will be spending money on alcohol, bring a small amount of cash rather than an ATM or credit card. Having access to a limited amount of funds will help keep both your bank account in check but also the amount you can drink.
2. Drink a glass of water with every alcoholic beverage you have. This will keep you hydrated and slow down the rate at which you are drinking. The slower you drink, the more likely you will be able to monitor the effects of the alcohol and know when you should stop.
3. Also, it can be hard to say no when all your friends keep drinking – they may even be encouraging you to keep drinking too. Although they are probably just trying to keep you in the party mood, drinking more than you are comfortable with or more than you planned is dangerous. Peer pressure (especially from our friends) is often hard to resist. If know you are at your limit but don’t want to deal with your nagging friends, instead of giving in, have a soda water or coke with a lime or lemon in it, NO ALCOHOL. It’ll look like a mixed drink but only YOU will know it’s actually only water or soda.
4. Never leave your drink unattended. I know you have probably heard this a million times but that’s only because it’s great advice. You don’t want to take any chances with someone being able to alter your drink by putting drugs or even more alcohol in it. You don’t want to end up drinking more than planned or become unconscious. Either one can leave you in very unsafe situations.
We often go out with friends so why not make a pact before heading out the door? Making a pact will mean that not only are you required to hold yourself accountable but you will also be accountable to each other. Decide if you will be drinking or not (and if so, how much), decide how you feel about meeting someone and the possibility of making out or hooking up, what you will do if you become separated, and when you should leave. Making a pact will mean that you are looking out not just for yourself but for each other.
And of course, the safe sex piece. It wouldn’t be a Just Ask Shawna blog if I didn’t mention something about safe sex. Even though you may not plan on having sex, I encourage you to bring condoms with you *just in case*. We often see patients here at NGHC who need emergency contraception (the morning after pill) because they ended up hooking up with someone even though they didn’t plan to. It’s better to have condoms and not need them than to need them and not have them. Stop by New Gen and pick some up! Simply ask the front desk & you’ll get a bag of 40 – no questions asked!!! And if you don’t take my advice and you do end up needing the emergency contraception (the morning after pill), please DO come see us. For more information about emergency contraception and how it works, click here!
Do you have any other tips or suggestions for a safe Halloween??? If so, leave a comment and choose from a Starbucks, Jamba Juice, or movie ticket gift card. If we get 5 or more comments, I will choose someone at random to win a $25 Old Navy gift card! So if you leave a comment, encourage your friends to do so too!
In happiness & health,
Reviewed by Kohar Der Simonian, MD
Pubic hair (hair around the penis, vulva, or anus) is a totally normal part of becoming an adult. However, some people (and it’s not just the ladies) would rather not have it, so they choose to shorten it or remove it all together (but if you aren’t one of them, don’t worry! Pubic hair is totally normal). The most common way of removing pubic hair is by shaving. Although shaving is meant to leave the area smooth and hairless, it can instead leave the area irritated! Razor burn and ingrown hairs are common concerns for those just starting to shave their pubic area so New Gen has come up with a few tips to help ya out.
1. If you have long hairs (usually those who have never shaved or haven’t shaved in a long time), trim the hairs with clippers or scissors first. Electric clippers are best for this purpose.
2. The softer the hairs, the easier it will be for you to shave. Try taking a long, warm bath before shaving, or choose to shave at the end of your shower.
3. Apply shaving gel a few minutes before shaving to soften hairs. If you have sensitive skin, you might want to try a hypoallergenic or fragrance-free brand.
4. Use a sharp and or new razor. The sharper the razor blade, the better it will work and less irritation it will cause to your skin.
5. When shaving, don’t move the razor over the same area more than twice. This will help reduce skin irritation.
• On the first stroke, go with the direction of hair growth to remove most of the hair.
• On the second stroke, go against the direction of hair growth for a smooth, close shave. If going against the direction of the hair growth tends to irritate you (and for many it does, especially when they are new to shaving), then skip that and do both strokes going the same direction of hair growth.
6. Clean the area after shaving with mild soap and water to reduce the risk of infection. Continue to practice clean hygiene, washing the area at least once a day to reduce sweat and oil build-up.
7. Go as long as possible between shavings to reduce skin irritation.
A few extra tips:
1. The skin around your genitals is extra sensitive. Some people can be allergic to some types of shave gel. If you have sensitive skin, you might want to try a hypoallergenic or fragrance-free brand of shave gel.
2. To reduce the risk of ingrown hairs and razor bumps after shaving, use an exfoliating brush or loofah sponge when washing the area daily.
3. When the hair starts growing back, it can be uncomfortable and itchy. Chaffing is nearly unavoidable, but exfoliating the area regularly can help. Exfoliating means removing the outer most layer of dead skin cells. This can be done with a loofah or wash cloth.
4. If you have tried shaving and you don’t like it for whatever reason but still want a sleeker look, consider closely trimming your hair instead of shaving. It provides many of the benefits of shaving without all the risks!
In happiness & health,
Reviewed by Kohar Der Simonian, MD
I know it’s been longer than usual since my last post and I am so very sorry BUT I promise I have a good reason. All of us here at New Gen have been really busy training 4 new health educators!!!! Two of the new health educators are the new AmeriCorps members and the other two are San Francisco State University Health Education interns. We are so grateful that these four have joined us. They are proving to be great additions to the New Gen team and like all staff, they are extremely comfortable discussing all things related to sex and relationships so don’t hesitate to ask them questions. So without further adieu, here they are!
Hola! My name is Alondra and I am a new Health Educator at New Gen. I have plenty of experience working with teens as a tutor and teacher’s assistant. I am very excited to be working here and helping young men and women make the best reproductive health choices for themselves!
I am originally from Mexico, but grew up in the South Bay. My interests include dancing to a variety of music like cumbia and hip-hop, traveling and going to the beach! I also love to eat delicious, home-cooked Mexican food!
My name is Zoe and I’m a Health Educator at New Gen. I’ve worked at other health centers and clinics doing front desk, administration, and translating, but this is the first time I’ve had the opportunity to do education and counseling. I love working with adolescents because they’re still very much in the process of figuring out who they are and becoming comfortable with themselves and in their relationships. It’s a great time to start forming habits and practices that will lead to a healthy and happy life!
I grew up in Pittsburgh, PA, but chose the cornfields of Ohio as the backdrop for my college education. After graduation I spent a brief time in rural Guatemala translating for doctors and physical therapists before making the big move to the Bay Area! So far I’m loving the urban life, spending my free time exploring the city and the natural beauty that surrounds it, enjoying free concerts, finding new spots to eat lunch, doing yoga, and trying to learn how to cook! I’m so excited to work for a health center that values and protects the patient’s right to all kinds of reproductive and sexual health services.
SFSU Health Education Interns:
Hello, my name is Arianna, I am currently in San Francisco State’s Health Education program and I am interning at New Gen for my final semester. Ever since high school, I’ve always had an interest in adolescent reproductive health. Growing up in a Catholic school from K-8th grade, I was never introduced to topics of sex, relationships, or reproductive health. It wasn’t until I started going to school at a public high school, that I began learning about sexual health.
It started with a 15 year old me learning about birth control from a guest speaker in my English class. This lesson made me feel empowered to take control over my own body and protect myself and encourage others to do the same. I was “that one friend” in the group who convinced and encouraged everyone to get on some type of birth control. And I was always the first one to call when someone was nervous to go to the school based health center alone. While working as a Health Educator at New Gen, I hope I can be a valuable resource to youth and empower them to take care of their reproductive and overall health and well being. One of my goals is to make sure that youth leave here with the knowledge and skills to make their own informative decisions on their health and relationships with others.
Hi everyone! My name is Elaine. I’m interning at New Gen and loving it. I’m a super senior at San Francisco State University with a genuine passion in health and wellness. I love spending time in nature, whether that be hiking, hula-hooping, practicing yoga, searching for stones, or just hanging out with loved ones. I’m a vegetarian and very much enjoy cooking. I’m happily involved with a partner of three years and loving life with him in it! We have a pact to travel to a new place every year we are together. As for me, my life is an open book- no questions are off limits!
So next time you’re in the clinic and you see these lovely faces, say hello!!!! And if you’re interested in learning more about either programs click here – AmeriCorps & SFSH Health Education – they are both fantastic ways to get involved in the health care field. But I must admit I am a little biased, I am a graduate of the SFSU Health Education program.
In happiness & health,
P.S. I promise I will try not to lag so much between postings. To help me out, send me your questions at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you haven’t noticed by now, we LOVE Bedsider here at New Gen! That’s because Bedsider provides all the information you could ever want to know about birth control in a way that is super easy to understand (go check them out by clicking here). Recently Bedsider addressed a concern that we’ve recently been hearing a lot of at New Gen. And although I couldn’t have addressed this subject any better, don’t hesitate to contact me or New Gen if you still have questions or concerns.
In happiness & health,
P.S. The following is written entirely by Bedsider and can be found on their site (which I definitely recommend you check out) by clicking “Those Mirena Lawsuit Ads: Fact and Fiction” below the image.
The recent slew of Mirena IUD lawsuit ads are creepy. But are they true? We’re going to fearlessly wade into the scary things these ads claim, because we think the over 2 million U.S. women now using IUDs deserve the real info—without the hype.
What problems are being reported—and how common are they?
Some of the ads say 47,000 women have had problems with the Mirena. But where does that number come from? The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) scrutinizes drugs and devices for safety before they can be sold in the U.S., then continues collecting information about problems people have with drugs and devices after they’re on the market and being used more broadly.
Anyone can report problems to the FDA. Since Mirena came on the market in 2001, the FDA has received about 47,000 reports of problems with it. Many millions of women have used a Mirena over the 12 years it’s been on the market, so this number is actually a small fraction of the total—and it includes common complaints in addition to the rarer, scarier problems the lawsuit ads often focus on.
Here’s how the problems break down (and more about each below):
- almost half (45%, or about 21,500 women) of the complaints are about IUD expulsion
- pain during or after the IUD placement makes up 25% of the complaints (or 11,700 women)
- complaints about more bleeding make up 21% (or 10,100 women)
- complaints of less bleeding or no period account for 6% (or 2,800 women)
- complaints of pregnancy with the IUD make up 5% (or 2,200 women)
- perforation of the uterus accounts for 3% of the complaints (or 1,300 women)
Let’s look at the scientific evidence about how common each problem is and what it means if it happens to you.
It’s not surprising that almost half of the reported problems with Mirena were expulsion—it’s relatively common, occurring in up to 5% of women who get an IUD. Expulsion is a fancy way of saying that an IUD has been pushed out of its ideal location at the top of the uterus. The uterus is one big muscle, so this sometimes happens. In a complete expulsion, the IUD is pushed all the way out of the uterus into the vagina. In a partial expulsion (a.k.a. dislocation), an IUD is pushed only part way out and a woman may not know that her IUD isn’t where it should be.
If a woman doesn’t recognize a partially expelled IUD, it can mean the IUD isn’t working to prevent pregnancy. Signs of a partial expulsion include cramping, pain, and feeling the plastic of the IUD at the top of the strings. This is why doctors often advise checking on the IUD strings. If recognized quickly, a partial expulsion is not a big problem: the IUD needs to be removed, and a woman can decide if she wants to try another IUD or switch to a different method. After expelling one IUD, there may be a higher chance of expelling the next one.
The bottom line: Expulsion can be uncomfortable—and it’s definitely inconvenient—but it does not have lasting effects or cause infertility as some of the Mirena lawsuit ads imply.
Pain and bleeding
During insertion: IUD insertion pain is worse for some women than for others. (Even for women who experience a lot of pain during insertion, they often say it was worth the gain of hassle-free birth control.) After the IUD has been inserted, continuing pain may be a sign of a partial expulsion or another problem, so if the pain doesn’t go away within a few days of insertion, it’s definitely a good idea to check in with a health care provider.
During periods: In the long run, many women using a Mirena experience less period pain than they did before getting the IUD. About one-third of users have frequent or longer bleeding in the first three months, and about two-thirds have some spotting or bleeding between periods. After a year, about three-quarters of women have infrequent or no bleeding at all. On the other hand, some of the problems women report to the FDA are about lighter or nonexistent periods. Some Mirena users see this as a benefit, but if you’re not prepared for these possible changes, they can seem like a problem.
The bottom line: Only you know what’s normal for your body in terms of pain and periods. Learn as much as you can about how your pain and bleeding might be affected by any type of IUD before trying one. If after your IUD is inserted you have pain or bleeding beyond what you expected, talk to your health care provider.
Perforation and migration
For about 1 in 2,000 women, the IUD can get stuck in or puncture the uterus—also known as perforation. (That’s about the same chance as being hit by this satellite falling out of the sky.) Perforation only happens when the IUD is being put in. Highly skilled providers who have inserted many IUDs are less likely to have perforations. Women who are breastfeeding or have given birth within the last month are more likely to experience perforations because the muscle of the uterus is softer at those times.
What does it mean if there is a perforation? If it’s recognized immediately, the health care provider will stop the insertion. It takes about a week for the uterus to heal, and then a woman can have another IUD inserted if she wants. More than half of perforations may go unrecognized at the time of insertion. That may mean that a woman thought she had great birth control when she may not have. If undiagnosed for months, a perforation can make removing the IUD difficult, and can sometimes require surgery. Even in the worst-case scenario of an undiagnosed perforation that requires surgery, it shouldn’t have an impact on the woman’s future fertility.
Many of the lawsuit ads warn of IUDs migrating outside the uterus. Although it is extremely rare, there have been cases when an IUD has gotten past all of the thick layers of muscle of the uterus and entered the body cavity. How rare is this? So rare that even with tens of millions of women using IUDs worldwide, we can’t estimate how often it happens. We just know that there have been case reports in medical journals.
The bottom line: Perforation is rare and, if it’s recognized quickly, it’s not a major health event. Many providers will have you come back 4-6 weeks after an IUD placement to check on the strings and make sure everything is okay. If you’re worried, you can check your own strings. If you can’t find your strings, see your health care provider.
Pregnancy, now and later
Can you get pregnant with an IUD? Unfortunately, method failure is a risk with any and all contraceptives. So, yes—for a very small number of women, the IUD can fail and an accidental pregnancy can result. For the Mirena, this happens for about 2 in 1,000 women. That’s way less common than 90 pregnancies in 1,000 women using the pill—but it’s not zero.
What about getting pregnant after having an IUD? Studies have repeatedly shown that in the year after removing an IUD, over 80% of women who want to have a baby do get pregnant—exactly the same as for women who have never used an IUD. In other words, using an IUD now has no impact on future motherhood.
The bottom line: IUDs fail way less than other kinds of birth control, and they don’t affect your ability to get pregnant in the future.
Serious problems with IUDs are rare—but we understand that’s small comfort if you or someone you care about experiences them. Each person has to weigh the risks and benefits when making any decision, including about birth control, and we hope that this and our other information about IUDs helps create a more complete picture than the lawsuit ads alone.
love your body * have fun * use birth control
I feel like I have to pee all the time and when I go nothing happens except for a lot of pain and burning. What’s wrong?
Before I begin to answer your question you need to know that I cannot diagnose your problem via email (meaning I can’t tell you exactly what’s wrong). Only an in-person visit with a clinician can tell you what is going on. If you live in the Bay Area, give us a call at 415.502.8336 to schedule an appointment.
That being said, I can tell you that these symptoms are commonly associated with a urinary tract infection.What is a urinary tract infection?
A urinary tract infection, often referred to as a UTI, is an infection in any part of your urinary system (the part of your body that makes pee) — your kidneys, ureters, bladder and urethra. Most infections happen in the lower urinary tract system — the bladder and the urethra. The bladder is where urine is stored before leaving the body. The urethra is the tube that connects the bladder to the outside of the body.Check out the diagram below.
Although men can get UTI’s, it isn’t very common. That’s because the urethra, the tube that connects the bladder to the outside of the body, is shorter in women then it is in men making it much easier for bacteria (the germs that cause the infection) to travel from the outside of the body into the inside.
Most UTI symptoms include
- A frequent and strong urge to pee
- Despite the frequent and strong urge to pee, there may actually be little to no pee when trying to go
- A burning sensation when peeing
- Pee that appears cloudy
- Pee that appears red, bright pink or cola-colored — a sign that blood may be present in your pee (not a good thing)
- Strong-smelling pee
- Pelvic pain in women (lower abdominal/stomach area pain)
- Rectal pain in men (pain in the butt, literally)
It’s important to see a clinician right away if you are experiencing any of these symptoms because an untreated UTI can lead to more serious complications, like a kidney infection. Once a clinician diagnoses a UTI, antibiotics are given to clear the infection.
There are a few things you can do to prevent UTI’s and that includes wiping from front to back after using the bathroom. That will help prevent bacteria from the anus (butt-hole) finding their way into the urethra and into the bladder. Also, drinking plenty of water and peeing when you feel the need will flush bacteria from the bladder often and prevent them from multiplying and causing a problem. Lastly, for women, emptying your bladder right before and right after sex can really help reduce your risk of getting a UTI!
As always, let me know if you have any questions.
In happiness & health,
Reviewed by Koher Der Simonian, MD
This week we have an awesome article written by New Gen’s very own clinician, Meredith Warden!!! The article was originally published on Bedsider but it’s a concern we hear at NGHC all the time so we thought it was worth sharing!
Meredith Warden MD, MPH is a Family Planning Clinical Fellow and an Ob/Gyn at the University of California, San Francisco. She lives in San Francisco with her fantastic skateboarding husband and their little mini dachshund named Stretch. She loves being outside doing anything, and reading anywhere, anytime.
Hormonal birth control is one of the best ways to manage painful periods.
Having a painful period can mess up your day, or week—or weeks! Every woman’s period is different and the same woman’s periods are often different over time. So how do you know if the pain you have with your period is normal? And what can you do to make your periods less painful?
For more information on periods, check out some previous blogs!
My periods are really painful. Am I normal?
It’s normal for women to have some cramping, bloating, nausea, or diarrhea before their period starts each month. These symptoms can continue for a few days after the period starts, and they can be annoying—but they shouldn’t interfere with going to school or work, or with otherwise living life.
Here’s what’s not normal:
- Moderate to severe cramps or lower belly pain with every period.
- Periods so bad that they interfere with work, school, or life in general
Periods like this may be dysmenorrhea—a fancy medical term for pain with menstruation. There are several possible causes of severe period pain, some of which have special treatment options.
- The cells from the lining of the uterus may be growing into the muscles of the uterus (adenomyosis) or on other organs in the body (endometriosis).
- The muscle of the uterus may be growing fibroids.
- The uterus may be releasing too much of a substance called prostaglandins, causing its muscles to contract irregularly and leading to big-time pain.
The good news is that you don’t have to put up with this pain! If you’re having abnormally bad periods, talk to your health care provider about what might be causing the pain and how to treat it. There are a few things you can do to make your periods less painful, shorter, or go away altogether.
And what are the solutions?
1. Make your periods less painful. You can buy pain killers like ibuprofen (Advil or Motrin) at the drug store. Start taking them right when you first start feeling symptoms, or if your cycle is really regular, take them just before you expect your period.
2. Make your periods lighter. All types of hormonal birth control are even better at reducing pain than over-the-counter meds. The hormonal IUD, the implant, the shot, the pill, the patch, and the ring will all make periods lighter. This is because these methods of birth control make the lining of the uterus thinner. There’s less tissue in the uterus to shed, so periods are lighter. One special note on the implant and the shot: for some women, these methods cause more days of spotting or bleeding, but periods become lighter and less painful overall.
3. Have fewer periods. The ultimate solution may be to have as few periods as possible. Several methods of birth control can make periods go away for months or even years at a time:
- One of the best ways to treat painful periods is to get the hormonal IUD Mirena. This IUD makes periods lighter and shorter for nearly all women, and many stop getting periods even after one year of use. The chance that you’ll stop getting your period increases the longer you use it. Periods should be light or nonexistent as long as you use a Mirena—up to 5 years. (Of course you don’t have to use it for all 5 years—you can have it removed anytime you want to. Your ability to get pregnant returns right after it’s removed.)
- You can use the pill or the ring continuously. Some brands of the pill are packaged for 3 months of continuous use (e.g. Seasonale or Seasonique). But you don’t need a fancy brand: with a monophasic pill, instead of having a few days of placebo pills when you’d normally get your period, you can just start a new pack of active pills. Here are more details on how to use the pill this way. (However, this may not be an option for those using Family Pact, the little green card we give you at New Gen, to pay for their pills because Family Pact will only give 3 packs of pills every 3 months – ask NGHC for more information about this.) For the ring, instead of having the ring out for a few days when you’d normally get your period, you can just change your ring once a month and skip the week without one. After 3-6 months, you may have break-through bleeding.
- You can try the shot, which causes about half of women to stop getting periods after a year of use.
When hormonal birth control stops your period, it’s because the lining of the uterus gets so thin that there’s nothing to shed. It’s totally safe to skip periods this way, so if you suffer from serious period pain, talk to your provider about what you can do about it.
If you have questions or you are experiencing period pain, come see us at New Gen! We would love to help put an end to your period pain!
Thank you for reading,
Meredith Warden, MD