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Contraceptive Pill Side Effects

What side effects can the contraceptive pill cause?

Contraceptive Pill Side Effects

What side effects can the contraceptive pill cause?

Dr Louisa Draper

"The contraceptive pill can cause side effects and some women have to try several pills before they find one which works well for them." - Dr Louisa Draper

Contraceptives usage stat
Dr Louisa Draper

"The contraceptive pill can cause side effects and some women have to try several pills before they find one which works well for them."

Dr Louisa Draper

View Contraceptive Pills
Contraceptives usage stat
The pill is a popular contraceptive but many women are confused about its side effects and safety. Which side effects can it cause and are they dangerous? With news headlines about the pill, thrombosis and cancer, it can be difficult to make sense of the health implications of the pill. Find out which side effects you may experience on the pill and what they mean.

Last reviewed: 28/11/2019 by Dr Clair Grainger

Fact and Fiction

Fiction: You need to take regular breaks from the pill.

Fact: Incorrect - If you are happy with your pill, your doctor feels this is safe for you to continue and it isn’t causing any side effects, you can continue taking the combined pill until aged 50 or the minipill until age 55.

Fiction:
The pill makes you gain weight.

Fact: Some women experience weight gain while taking the pill but this side effect does not affect all women and is usually related to water retention. Some pills, such as Yasmin, are less likely to cause water retention.

Fiction: The pill is bad for your health.

Fact: While the pill can cause a slight increase in your risk of certain conditions, it also lowers your risk of other health problems, such as bowel cancer. It can also improve acne and reduce period pain.

Fiction: The hormones you take accumulate in your body.

Fact: The hormones in the pill do not remain in your body for long, that’s why you have to take it every day.