5 uses of contraceptives beyond preventing pregnancy
The most common use of contraceptives is to prevent pregnancy. However, while contraceptives were initially intended for this purpose, they have several other uses, including lowering the risk of some types of cancers.
There are hormonal and non-hormonal methods of birth control.
There’s a widespread preference for non-hormonal methods because they have fewer side effects when compared to hormonal birth control.
The use of hormonal methods such as implants, UIDs, and the pill offers a range of benefits too besides preventing pregnancy.
5 other benefits of hormonal contraception:
1. Regulates menstrual cycle
Some women experience heavy or irregular periods. Research has shown that using hormonal birth methods may balance the hormonal fluctuations that happen throughout the cycle. Today, some birth control pills can help regulate the menstrual cycle.
2. Helps with period pain
Menstrual pain can be overwhelming to some women. A woman may use a birth control method to ease this pain. Hormonal birth control prevents ovulation and makes the period lighter. When a woman misses ovulating, the uterus doesn’t have painful contractions that are known to cause cramps during ovulation. It is therefore advisable for a woman to try hormonal birth control, in case they have painful periods.
Contraceptive pills with estrogen can also help with menstrual migraines. A migraine is a strong type of headache that affects more women than men. This is caused by hormonal changes which are a major trigger for migraines in some people. The pill can help to skip periods and minimize this drop that causes migraine.
3. It reduces the risk of certain cancers
This is a long-term benefit. The effect of some birth control methods such as the pill can last for a long time even after one stops using them. Women who use hormonal contraceptives are less likely to get ovarian and uterine cancer than those who don’t.
4. Clears up the skin and prevents unwanted hair growth
Contraceptive pills have been known to clear and stop acne as well as prevent unwanted hair growth. You may have noticed hair growth above your lip, under the chin, between breasts, inner thigh, etc. it could be that you have higher than normal male hormones. Contraceptives work to reduce the levels of male hormones.
5. Helps with PCOS
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) often affects young women and girls. PCOS is caused by hormonal imbalance. This condition often causes irregular periods, unwanted hair growth, and acne. Contraceptive pills can balance the hormones thus improving these symptoms and regulating your period.
While birth control pills have more benefits beyond preventing pregnancy, they may not be the best option for you. We encourage you to talk to a doctor. Do not make the decision to go on the pill without consulting a doctor.