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The Best Birth Control Pill: How to Choose the Right One

Are you wondering what birth control pill is the best on the market? Or are you looking for a birth control pill that is “best” for you? Look no further.

best birth control pill

Top-of-the-line oral contraceptives are not necessarily the best choice for every woman out there. Although some pills are quite popular, they might not be suitable for your hormonal needs. Before you decide on a specific pill, consult your OB-GYN and discuss what you need and how often you need it. [Read: What to expect at your first gynecologist appointment]

Why is it important to choose the right pill?

When you want to start using contraceptive pills, you must be aware of the risks. If you choose the wrong pill, you could end up pregnant or dangerously ill. Either way, your needs won’t be met and you’ll risk hurting your body in the process.

Aside from that, birth control pills can differ by dosage and content. There are two reasons for that. One is because some women can be sensitive to certain kinds of hormones. The other is because some women can’t be trusted to take their pills religiously.

What type of pills will be prescribed?

There are two kinds of contraceptive pills that doctors prescribe. One of those is the combination pill. It contains both estrogen and progestin. The other is called a minipill, which contains only one hormone: progestin.

These two are very different in terms of the mechanism of their function. The combination pill works by preventing ovulation from occurring. This means that, while taking the pill, your ovaries will not release any eggs into your uterus. You know what this means, right? No more periods!

Despite the availability of combination pills, most women tend to choose the conventional method of taking birth control pills, which means taking 21 active pills and 7 inactive pills. This is so they will experience a pseudo-period, when the truth is, it’s just withdrawal bleeding from the pills. Your uterine lining is not shedding, because you did not release any egg cells while you were on birth control. [Read: A girl’s ultimate survival guide to period woes]

Aside from the differences in pill packs, combination pills are also categorized as monophasic or multiphasic. Monophasic pills have the same amount of hormones in each pill, while multiphasic pills have varied amounts of hormones in certain pills in the pack.

Multiphasic pills were designed to lessen the side effects of contraceptive pills. They include low dose pills for women who are sensitive to hormones. These women usually have excessive bleeding or spotting and sometimes even extended cessation of menstruation after they stop taking the pill. Some multiphasic pills are thought to lessen the possible weight gain side effects of birth control, as well.

The minipill, on the other hand, works by thickening the cervical mucus and thinning the uterine lining. This helps prevent sperm from reaching the egg cell, thereby preventing fertilization. It can sometimes suppress ovulation, but not as effectively as the combination pill.

Minipills are prescribed for women who breastfeed, because estrogen lowers the amount of milk a lactating woman can produce. It is also ideal for women who have cardiovascular complications like hypertension, heart disease, and thromboembolisms.

Emergency Contraceptive Pills (ECP)

These are for women who do not wish to take birth control pills. This form of contraception is more commonly known as the “morning after pill,” but experts say that it is most effective when used directly after intercourse. There are four kinds of ECP’s in the market, which include:

a. Progestin-only pills
b. Antiprogestin ulipristal acetate
c. Antiprogestin mifepristone
d. Combined estrogen and progestin *no longer available*

These pills work by using an increased dose of hormones to force the reproductive system to delay or stop ovulation altogether. It is not recommended to use this on a regular basis, because it can screw up your menstrual cycle. This can lead to unplanned pregnancies, even when taking your next dose of ECP. The worst part is that it can lead to terrible complications, like endometriosis and excessive bleeding.

ECP’s are not abortive pills. Due to the lack of education in this aspect, many women tend to consider ECP as an abortive measure, which just ends up making them feel worse when pregnancy symptoms kick in.

How do you know which birth control pill is right for you?

Birth control pills are regularly prescribed by doctors with specific instructions on when and how to take them. If a woman decides to take a random set of pills on her own, her doctor cannot warn her about the possible side effects and complications, such as the risk of overdosing, the dangers of not taking it on time, and the long-term effects it can cause.

Your doctor can also help you choose the right pill by studying your medical history, menstrual cycles, and current hormone levels. One of the biggest risks in taking contraceptive pills is the risk of hypertension and heart disease, which is why your doctor needs to make sure you aren’t at risk. If you are, they will help you find a pill that suits your medical needs.

Some women choose to bypass their check-up and buy the pills their friends use. Even though most women take these pills without repercussions, some women end up with nasty side effects that could have been avoided, had they asked their doctor. [Read: Should you take it? 26 pros and cons of birth control pills]

Should you buy an expensive set of pills?

Birth control pills differ in a number of ways, but the most important thing you have to remember is that the price of the pill is not a definitive marker of its efficacy. A certain birth control pill might be expensive for a number of reasons, but it is not necessarily because it is the most effective.

Contraceptive pills go through a rigorous approval phase at the Food and Drug Administration, so any pill that is sold in an FDA-approved pharmacy is suitable for each woman’s specific needs. Any pill you buy is almost sure to work, especially if you follow the instructions to the letter.

It is important to note that the pill is not always 100% effective. This is either due to human error *yours* or nature *luck of the draw*. This is because the only contraceptive method that is 100% effective is abstinence—and you wouldn’t be reading this if that were an option you were willing to entertain.

In conclusion, the best pill for you is the pill that best fits your body’s chemical makeup. Both major and minor brands carry different kinds of pills, which means you are covered, as long as you have a pharmacy at your disposal.

[Read: 10 birth control options and what they can do for you]

Are you ready to choose the right pill for you? We hope this feature helped you narrow down your search, but we recommend that you consult your doctor before taking your first round.

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Danielle Anne
Those who can’t do, teach. I can neither do nor teach as well as others, but I can try. Aside from being a writer, I am also a physical therapist. My dream is...
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