Living Wild September 2014 : Page 3

answers to your quesƟons about sex and relaƟonships 4 Questions About Birth Control Pills Q. Whenever I get my period, it’s sort of comforting, knowing that I’m not pregnant. My boyfriend and I use condoms to avoid pregnancy. What happens when you go on the pill? I heard that some women don’t have periods at all when they are on the pill. If I don’t have that monthly “sign,” how am I going to know that I’m actually not pregnant? A. It’s very likely you will still have a period while you are on the 4th week of pills in the pill pack. Your menstrual period may be shorter and/or lighter than it is now, or it may be longer and/or heavier. Everyone is different. What type of period you will have depends on the type and dosage of medication you are prescribed and how your body responds to it. Q. I’m not very good about scheduling medicines. Do I have to take the birth control pill with food to avoid an upset stomach? A. Some women experience nausea when taking (or more likely when starting) oral contraceptives. Taking the pill during or right after eating can help to reduce most potential tummy trouble. a short delay (about 1 month) in becoming pregnant after stopping the pill when compared with attempting to get pregnant after not taking birth control pills. Q. What about future fertility after being on the pill? A. The really good news is that oral contraceptives may improve future fertility by reducing the risk of uterine fibroids, ectopic pregnancies, ovarian & endometrial cancers, and endometriosis (all possible causes of infertility). Pills are a good option for most women who want to become pregnant in the future. Some women may have Q. Will the pill affect my mood? A. In most women, there is no noticeable change in mood and frequently, mood changes are due to other life events. However, if you notice that you experience irritability, depression, or a reduced interest in sex, talk with your medical provider to discuss whether switching brands might help. SexTalk is wri en by Lee Ann Hamilton, M.A., CHES, David Salafsky, MPH, and Carrie Hardesty, MEd, CHES, health educators at The UA Campus Health Service. Have a ques on? Email it to sextalk@email.arizona.edu Get the latest SexTalk delivered to your inbox every Monday! 3 www.health.arizona.edu • 520.621.6490

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