You may call them “magical pills,” because birth control pills offer protection against unplanned pregnancies. However, it is still an unknown fact that birth control pills are in reality used to treat a wide range of health problems in women because they contain oestrogen and progesterone hormones. Here’s what you should know about oral contraceptives, other than contraception.
Most oral contraceptives are available in a pack containing 28 pills – 21 active pills (contain hormones) and 7 inactive pills (do not contain hormones). Your period usually occur during the week when you are on inactive pills. So, by taking more active pills you can actually postpone your menstrual cycle and regulate it, by maintaining the hormonal levels in the body. Here are top 8 home remedies to pre-pone periods.
The high levels of prostaglandin, a hormone produced by the uterus, in the body is one of the reasons for painful periods. This hormone causes uterine contractions, which in turn cause menstrual cramps. Hence, high levels of prostaglandin in the body cause heavy uterine contractions and severe cramps. Taking oral contraceptives prevent ovulation, thereby lowering the production of prostaglandins, eventually relieving menstrual pain.
In endometriosis, the tissue lining the inner wall of the uterus grows outside it (such as on the ovaries, behind the uterus, on the fallopian tubes and the bowels or bladder). This causes heavy bleeding and pain during menstruation, and problems getting pregnant and having sex. The presence of progesterone-like hormones in oral contraceptives not only helps in reducing the symptoms of endometriosis but also inhibits the growth of the uterine lining.
PCOS is the most commonly seen hormonal disorder in females, which is characterized by multiple cysts (fluid filled sacs) in the ovaries. Because they are caused due to abnormal hormonal levels, using oral contraceptives help in maintaining the levels of hormones in the body. This in turn, causes your menstrual flow to regularise, subsiding symptoms and improving sexual health. Read about yoga asanas that help to treat PCOS problem.
Combat Acne and Other Skin Problems
One of the most common causes of frequent acne break-outs is hormonal imbalance in the body. However, oral contraceptives that contain oestrogen and progesterone hormones play a key role in maintaining the balance of both hormones. Apart from this, they also help in lowering the production of androgens (male hormones, which are produced in high quantities due to hormonal imbalance).
Oral contraceptives can cut your risk of ovarian and endometrial cancer by 70 percent. These pills limit the number of ovulation cycles a woman is supposed to experience in her lifetime. During the process of ovulation, there are certain changes that take place in the ovaries, including hormonal imbalance which might lead to cancer in women. Hence, oral contraceptives that contain hormones (in chemical form) aid in maintaining hormonal levels, thereby protecting against various cancers.
One of the lesser-known causes of infertility in women is pelvic inflammatory disease, which can be prevented by taking oral contraceptives. The presence of progestin (chemical form of progesterone) thickens cervical mucus, making it tough for the PID-microbes to enter the cervix.
In postmenopausal women, bone loss is majorly caused to lack of oestrogen hormone in the body. As oral contraceptives contain a fixed dose of oestrogen, taking these pills offer protection and improve bone mineral density.
Read more articles on Contraception.