What are Mini Pills?
Progestogen-Only Pills or Progestin-Only Pills are oral contraceptive pills, commonly known as mini pills. Unlike regular birth control pills, mini pills contain only one hormone called Progestin or Progestogen and therefore, have a lower risk of side effects. The women over 35 or women who cannot take regular contraceptive pills colloquially use mini pills. These light contraceptive pills are taken for the full cycle of 28 days without any break.
How Mini Pills Work?
Mini pills perform three functions- first, like all other contraceptive pills it stops your ovary from releasing an egg. It changes the shape of the uterus making it unfavourable for implantation of the fertilised egg. After its use, the mucus between your uterus and your vagina thickens. Not letting the sperms reach to the egg.
Efficacy of Mini Pills
Mini pills are similar to combined oral contraceptive pills but their effectiveness depends on their regularity of consumption. Progestin- only pills must be taken for 28 days even on the days of your menstruation and on the same time every day. If there is any break in the routine of the pills, your chances of getting pregnant will increase.
Benefits of Mini Pills
- Progestin-only pill does not contain estrogens, therefore it is not related with the elevated risk of heart attacks.
- Presence of estrogens reduces the milk production, so mini pills are recommended to women who are breast-feeding.
- Use of mini pill decreases the chances of pelvic inflammatory diseases.
- Women on mini pills have less chances of anaemia.
- Women on mini pills experience less menstrual cramping and pain as compared to those on ordinary contraceptive pills.
- Regular use of mini pills does not affect your future fertility and it will return immediately or after sometime.
- Mini pills are easy to use and do not affect your sex play.
Side effects of Mini Pills
- Use of progestin-only pills may cause breast tenderness and mood swings.
- You may feel hungry more often which can result in weight gain.
- Some women may feel nausea and dizziness.
- Menstruation cycles may become irregular.
- Risks of functional ovarian cyst or ectopic pregnancy increase.
- Progestin-only pills do not protect you from sexual transmitted diseases.
- Some women may experience sleeping disorders.
Mini pills are contraceptive pills containing progestin but no estrogens. Mini pills are suitable for women who are breastfeeding, diabetic, who smoke or women who cannot take ordinary contraceptive pills for whatever reason. Mini pills prevent many serious health risks such as pelvic inflammatory diseases and ovarian and endometrial cancer. Do not take progestin-only pills without consulting your doctor.
Read more articles on Contraception.
Source: Onlymyhealth editorial team Feb 10, 2012
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