No, women do not need to "pause" and stop taking the pill every two years

In a recent survey, more than half of women between 18 and 19, he agreed that "women should 'take a break' from the contraceptive pill every two years."

You may be surprised to know that there is no biological evidence that supports the idea of ​​"giving your body a break" and, in fact, could do you more harm than good.


There are many different types of birth control pills and most contain both estrogen and progestogen (what is known as combined oral contraceptive pills).

Doctors use detailed medical eligibility criteria to decide if a contraceptive method is suitable for you based on your medical history, since the pill is not recommended for some people and others may start taking it and realize that they are not doing well. .

But for many women the pill It is an easy and useful method To avoid pregnancy. In fact, it is the preferred contraceptive among women under 30.

Accumulation of hormones?

Several studies in the United States and Australia have revealed that many women are concerned about using an excessive dose or accumulating hormones in their body if they use a hormonal contraceptive method. These kinds of misconceptions about the way the pill works feed the wrong belief that it is good to stop taking the pill from time to time.

For some people, the pill may be related with unpleasant side effects such as breast tenderness, swelling, headache and nausea.

But instead of being an effect of hormones, these unpleasant side effects are often associated with the hormone-free interval that allows "withdrawal" bleeding to mimic the natural menstrual cycle.

These side effects can be reduced thanks to new medications or with a medication that barely has hormonal intervals (causing no withdrawal bleeding).

Once a doctor prescribes the pill, it is recommended that you do not stop taking it for at least three months to allow your body to adapt to the side effects itself.

Whether or not a pill causes a woman problems it doesn't have to do With the duration of its use. In fact, all the initial side effects will come back after taking a break and that is why it is best to find a pill that suits you and not leave it.

It is also true that with age you will change the type of contraceptives that your body needs, so it is important to check your medication periodically. There are studies that show that women stop relying on the contraceptive pill over time when they try to get pregnant, have children, complete their families and when menopause approaches.

Serious health risks?

Like any medicine, there is a minimal risk of serious side effects associated with the pill. The risk of suffering a serious adverse effect is more likely during the first months when the medication is started or when it is taken again after a break. Hence, it may be more dangerous to start and stop taking the pill than to take it continuously for many years.

Although there is a very low risk of complications in relation to the pill, widespread fears are augmented by "alarming studies on the pill" (studies misunderstood by the media) that are not based on a correct understanding of the associated risks.

One of the most serious side effects associated with the pill is thrombotic complications such as strokes, myocardial infarction and venous thrombosis. In other words, the formation of blood clots in the brain, heart, legs, arms and in the English. That is why the pill may not be recommended for older women, especially if they are smokers.

However, the pill is a medication suitable for those middle-aged women who are not at risk of cardiovascular disease.

Although in theory it's something very serious, the absolute risk of blood clots due to the pill is very low and the risk is slightly higher than that of women who do not take the pill and even lower than women in periods of pregnancy, childbirth and postpartum.

Some people may be concerned about the risk of cancer associated with prolonged use of the pill. It is true that its use represents a slight increase in the risk of uterine cancer, but it also reduces the risk of ovarian cancer and endometrial cancer.

It is also important to keep in mind that there are a number of benefits of the pill that do not have to do with contraceptive measures such as better menstruation control; the improvement of premenstrual symptoms, acne, pain, severe menstrual bleeding and iron deficiency anemia; and a reduction in ovarian cysts, benign breast disease and possible pelvic inflammatory disease.

These non-contraceptive side effectsThese are what make it the preferred method for women to avoid pregnancy.


One of the concerns of women about the long-term use of the pill is that they will find it harder to conceive children when they stop using it. Research from several countries reveals that women want to recover their fertility quickly once they stop taking the pill.

The time it takes for a woman to be able to conceive again depends on many factors, so it is difficult to determine the role of the contraceptive pill. Some scientific studies document a temporary delay in conceiving that normally only lasts a few months.

However, an analysis of 17 studies revealed that normal pregnancy rates for one year after taking the pill were between 79 and 96%, similar to women who stopped using condoms or were not using any other method contraceptive.

What should you do?

If the pill suits you, you don't have to "give your body a break".

But it is important that you submit to regular medical check-ups and that you check your contraceptive needs. This is particularly relevant in those important moments of your reproductive life: when you become sexually active, when you start a new relationship, when you consider having a baby, when you just had a baby or when you decide not to have any more children.

It's always good to be up to date on the latest contraceptive methods to know that you're using the one that best suits you.

In Jared |

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