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Can birth control cause infertility?

Will birth control affect my fertility after I stop taking it?

If you have struggled with fertility, you are likely have come across all sorts of explanations why you cannot get pregnant. Birth control is often a key suspect. There is a popular belief that it can make women infertile.

Does it?


Many hormonal contraceptives have side effects but infertility is not one of them. The fact that birth control works to prevent pregnancy does not mean that using it for a long time will reduce chances of conception once you stop using.

There is no scientific evidence that proves that birth control can make you infertile, no matter how long you have been taking it. In fact, the chances of getting pregnant for women who use contraceptives and those have never used them are the same.


When you stop using birth control, you may notice a temporary delay in fertility. This is because the time it takes for ovulation and menstruation to fully return varies from woman to woman. In some, they resume as soon you discontinued use, while in other it takes longer.

Remember that this is temporary!

Don’t go yet, you need to hear this:

An important factor that affects how long it takes for ovulation and menstruation to return is the type of birth control you were using.

Some women conceive within 1-2 months after they stop taking birth control while most will conceive within a year. With Depo-Provera, it may take longer, sometimes 9-10 months, before ovulation and periods return meaning it may take you longer to get pregnant. You need to be aware of this delay in fertility when choosing birth control so that you can plan your pregnancy accordingly.

If you do not get pregnant a year after you stop using birth control, see a doctor or a fertility specialist. They should determine the exact cause of that delay.

Related: Tips to Increase Your Chances of Getting pregnant

Do you have any questions? Talk to us in the comments section.

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