A woman has less-than-desirable periods. Her menstrual symptoms affect her day to day life. Maybe she’s experiencing mood changes, pain, acne, PMS, breast tenderness, heavy bleeding, or any of the other myriad of symptoms that can go along with menstrual cycles.
So, she goes to the doctor.
She gets put on hormonal birth control to manage her symptoms.
End of story.It’s unlikely that there’s any follow-up or guidance on how long to stay on the hormonal birth control, or what it’s capable of doing to her body over the long-term. A few years pass and she wants to come off of birth control, maybe to try to conceive, or maybe it just no longer fits into her lifestyle. And she’s right back to struggling with those same initial symptoms—and often her fertility, too—which is usually what brings her to me. Then we begin the process of healing her body, optimizing her fertility, and fixing all of the issues that hormonal birth control has created within her body. Oof. Knowledge is power. It’s important to know ALL of the risks and potential side effects if you’re thinking about starting hormonal birth control (or, if you’re already on one). This way if you do decide to be on one of these forms of birth control, you’ll have made a fully informed decision and know what to look out for if issues come up.