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Does Birth Control Cause Early Menopause

Can You Regain Bmd Loss Caused By Hormonal Contraceptives

Does uterine ablation (NovaSure) cause early menopause? Can I still get pregnant afterwards?

Yes, you can do much to counteract the bone-destructive effects of hormonal contraceptives!

If you are a premenopausal woman who has been on hormonal contraceptives for several years or even longer, dont be discouraged. Once hormonal contraceptive use is discontinued, womens BMD does begin to rebuild.

Several studies have now shown this, including a cross-sectional study that included 135 women, who were divided into three groups:

  • Group A, 41 women who were current users of oral contraceptives
  • Group B, 51 women who had never used oral contraceptives
  • Group C, 41 women who were former users of oral contraceptives.

Each patient completed a questionnaire on demographic parameters, marital state history and contraception history, including duration of use and type of contraceptive pills or other hormonal contraceptive method used. Hip, femur and lumbar spine BMD were measured by DEXA .

Past users and nonusers showed significantly higher BMD than current users at the spine, femur and forearm. Nonusers had the highest BMD, but even past users had higher BMD levels than current ones. So, this study suggests that bone does begin to rebuild once oral contraceptive use is discontinued.

If you have been using any form of hormonal contraceptive for more than 1 year, consider the following:

If we take action together, we can help prevent much needless harm. Please protect yourself and join me in sharing this information.

When To Stop Contraception

Contraception should be continued for at least one year after your last menstrual period if this was after the age of 50, and for two years if your periods stop before the age of 50. This is because sometimes periods may restart even after several months with no bleeding. Otherwise contraception can be stopped at the age of 55, even if you are still having occasional periods, as the risk of pregnancy at this age is extremely low.

However, if you are using progestogen-only hormonal contraception you may well have only occasional periods or no periods at all, thus making it difficult to tell if you are menopausal. With the exception of the injection, progestogen-only methods can be safely used until the age of 55 years. Your healthcare provider may recommend a blood test which would give some guidance as to how much longer you need to continue the method.

If using combined hormonal contraception you will experience regular periods or withdrawal bleeds which mask one of the signs of the menopause. Blood tests are not reliable and not recommended if you are using combined hormonal methods, which should be stopped at the age of 50, switching to an alternative non-hormonal or progestogen-only method.

Do All Women Get Menopause Symptoms

Most women will notice a change in their periods as they approach menopause. Their periods may get shorter, longer, lighter or heavier. They may occur closer together, or further apart. Eventually, periods will stop altogether.

For some women, this change in their periods is only thing they will notice. But most women will also experience at least some additional symptoms around the time of menopause. The type, frequency and severity of symptoms can vary considerably from woman to woman.

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Continuing Birth Control Pills To Manage Perimenopause Symptoms

Taking birth control during perimenopause has several benefits. Doing so keeps hormone levels consistent, reducing the fluctuations that produce perimenopause symptoms, many of which can significantly and negatively impact womens lives.

The obvious benefit is contraception, and it is necessary for many women experiencing perimenopause. In fact, in the United States, women in their 40s have the second highest rate of unintended pregnancy . In addition, birth control pills can protect perimenopausal women from ovarian and uterine cancers, while also helping to prevent bone loss that can lead to osteoporosis.

In general, birth control is safe for nonsmoking women who are older than 35, as most perimenopausal women are, and who do not have a history of any of the following:

  • High blood pressure
  • Blood clots

How To Treat Them:

Is Your Hormonal Birth Control Protecting You or Causing ...

Hormone therapy, which involves taking supplemental estrogen or progesterone alongside estrogen, is thought to be the most effective available treatment for hot flashes after menopause. The F.D.A. has also approved paroxetine, an antidepressant most commonly known as Paxil, to treat moderate to severe hot flashes.

Some doctors do not recommend hormone therapy during perimenopause and instead prescribe a low-dose hormonal birth control method. Hormone therapy regimens typically contain one-fourth of the amount of hormone in the lowest-dose birth control pill, Dr. Adams said, but it is not enough to provide contraception and to control irregular bleeding.

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How Does Birth Control Affect Perimenopause Symptoms

Hormonal birth control can help prevent pregnancy and eliminate period symptoms. Similarly, using birth control during perimenopause can help alleviate unpleasant symptoms and even decrease the likelihood of negative health conditions. For instance, the process of menopause may lead to osteoporosis and other bone-related issues, and implementing birth control can help reduce this risk. Additionally, because birth control regulates hormone levels, it can further minimize some of the effects associated with perimenopause such as hot flashes, acne, and vaginal dryness.

It is important to note, however, that hormonal contraceptives can mask perimenopause symptoms. Furthermore, those who take birth control may not recognize when they have reached the perimenopause stage. For this reason, it is crucial to communicate with a doctor in order to better understand what is going on in your body.

Natural Family Planning Methods

Fertility awareness methods, also called ânatural methodsâ, are used by 4% of older women in the UK. These methods include monitoring body temperature, cervical mucus and the length of the menstrual cycle, and plotting the values on a chart to predict the fertile time. Devices such as Persona® are also available to buy, which monitor urine hormone levels. Natural family planning methods become less reliable in the perimenopause because ovulation becomes more difficult to predict as cycles become less regular and ovulation markers are difficult to interpret. Both the woman and her partner must be motivated to use this method consistently and correctly.

Withdrawal method

Withdrawal is natural form of contraception used by approximately by 5% of UK perimenopausal couples. It prevents approximately 50% of pregnancies that would have happened without using the method. With lower fertility rates in the perimenopause, withdrawal can be used as an adjunct to other methods, like NFP.

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Cognition Mood And Psychosocial Functioning

Evidence regarding cognitive decline in women with primary ovarian insufficiency is limited and mixed. A cohort study reported that young surgically menopausal women who were not receiving HT demonstrated signs of cognitive impairment compared with controls 33. These findings contrast with other reports that suggest preserved cognitive function in women with primary ovarian insufficiency who have intact ovaries 34.

Primary ovarian insufficiency has been referred to as the silent grief because of the negative self-image and isolation that can develop once a diagnosis is confirmed 35. Women with primary ovarian insufficiency who were surveyed about their diagnosis report significant levels of grief, diminished self-esteem, sadness, and limited access to psychological support to address these feelings 33536373839. Poor psychosocial functioning is explained, in small part, by vasomotor symptoms in this population 40. The emotional response to a diagnosis of primary ovarian insufficiency may be more complex and challenging in the adolescent population than for adults. Support from family or mental health professionals is important to facilitate the understanding and acceptance of the diagnosis 1340.

An Early First Menstrual Period May Lead To Premature Menopause

PERI AND MENOPAUSE: Birth Control Pill Side Effects

How do you know if youre starting perimenopause?

The most telling symptom is changes in your menstrual cycle, says psychiatrist Hadine Joffe, the executive director of the Connors Center for Womens Health and Gender Biology at the Brigham and Womens Hospital in Boston.

Its the menstrual cycle pattern that really defines this lead-up to menopause, she says. During perimenopause, periods might be shorter, then a long one, or then a skipped one, or then the flow might be different, says Joffe.

Theres no blood or hormone test that can diagnose perimenopause. Joffe says a hormone test isnt helpful because hormonal cycles become erratic and unpredictable during this stage.

Theres not really one point in time when a hormone test is done that can be definitive, she says. Even if you took several tests over time, you might get a very different readout.

Surprisingly, sometimes doctors arent prepared to help women recognize the start of this life phase. Edrie was upset at her doctors responses â or lack thereof. I felt so disappointed in the medical industry. How many women has my OB/GYN seen and not recognized the symptoms of perimenopause?

What symptoms to expect

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Hormonal Contraceptives Do Not Contain Natural Hormones

Hormonal contraceptives do not contain natural human hormones. They contain synthetic hormone-like compounds created to mimic some of the effects of natural human hormones.

Hormonal contraceptives contain progestin, , either alone or in combination with a synthetic estrogen-like compound. The two estrogens used in hormonal contraceptives in combination with a progestin are EE and mestranol, with EE being much more frequently employed.

But progestins are not progesterone!

The progestin drugs have varying degrees of estrogenic, androgenic, and anti-estrogenic actions, which are thought to be responsible for some of the numerous adverse side effects these drugs produce.

The Impact Of Birth Control On Mood Swings

Most birth control medications contain progesterone and estrogen, the two hormones responsible for female reproduction and development. When you are going through menopause, both hormones begin to fluctuate rapidly as the body decreases their production. This hormonal imbalance is the primary cause of several menopausal symptoms including mood swings. Depending on the level of hormones present in the beginning of menopause, birth control can either alleviate or worsen your mood swings. In later stages of menopause, when the production of estrogen and progesterone steadily declines, birth control often masks mood swings and other symptoms. This is because hormones in birth control may replenish the levels naturally lost by the body.

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Symptoms Of Premature And Early Menopause

The symptoms of early menopause are the same as for menopause at the typical age and can include:

  • menstrual cycle changes, including changes to the usual bleeding pattern, particularly irregular bleeding
  • hot flushes
  • viral infections the evidence is inconclusive, but it is thought that a viral infection, such as mumps or cytomegalovirus, could trigger premature menopause in some women.
  • Birth Control And Menopause Which One Is Appropriate For You

    Womenâs Hormonal Health: Balancing Perimenopause with ...

    So what forms of contraception are suitable for older women, especially those having wild hormone swings?

    If you take some form of birth control pill, it might be fine to continue with that for quite a few more years if it suits you.

    Thats if youve even noticed any symptoms the oral contraceptive pill can mask many signs of perimenopause including irregular periods, heavy periods and hot flashes.

    Some doctors may suggest a very low dose pill containing less estrogen than regular contraceptive pills. As well as helping with perimenopause symptoms, modern oral contraceptives can protect against ovarian and uterine cancer. They can also guard against loss of bone density which can lead to osteoporosis.

    However, like all birth control pills, women should always consult a doctor before starting them.

    Contraceptive injections and implants can be safely used up to the age of 50, although anyone with implants or at risk for developing osteoporosis might want to consider a different form of birth control.

    The intrauterine system can be a good choice for women in their 40s experiencing very heavy periods.

    The progesterone element of the intrauterine system acts as hormone replacement therapy. You can keep it in for between 4-7 years. Chat with your OBGYN for more information about whether it might suit you.

    The intrauterine system is not to be confused with the IUD which does not release progesterone.

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    What You Need To Know About Homocysteine

  • If you are on the pill or any other method of contraception you should ask your doctor to check your Homocysteine levels.
  • You might be wondering whats a good level or range for Homocysteine?
  • I like to see Homocysteine levels around 7, lab ranges from Labcorp or Quest show 0-15 being the range, but when you really dig into the research optimal levels around 7 and that should be your goal.
  • If these levels are elevated thats a sign of systemic inflammation in your brain and heart and it could be a very serious problem if you have symptoms like depression, anxiety Insomnia,
  • If you do have high levels, very next thing you want to do is get tested for a mutation in the MTHFR. If you want more information on this- I have a three part video series on MTHFR that explains what it is in simple language
  • If you look at this illustration showing the effects of oxidative stress you can see why I believe so strongly in testing for oxidative stress as well as Homocysteine levels.
  • CAD= Coronary Artery Disease

    Knowing The Symptoms Of Perimenopause

    Before answering that question, first its important to define perimenopause. Marked by a reduction in estrogen and progesterone, perimenopause is the transitional time before menopause. Its not until a woman has been without a menstrual cycle for one year that she has officially entered menopause.

    On average, perimenopause lasts four years, and the average woman enters menopause at age 51. However, these ranges can vary widely. Perimenopause can begin during a womans early 40s or even sooner.

    One of the most important steps in navigating the changes perimenopause brings is to know the common symptoms, which include:

    • Irregular periods
    • Insomnia or other sleep problems
    • Night sweats
    • Vaginal dryness

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    Exclusion And Inclusion Criteria

    Subjects who used HRT or OCs for menopausal symptoms during the 4 years prior to the date of last menstruation or the first year following the last menstruation were excluded from the analyses, because these women can have withdrawal bleedings caused by the use of OCs or HRT, obscuring the date of the menopause.

    Of the women included in the analyses , age at natural menopause was known in 4523 cases , 4178 women were censored at the age of their last known menstruation because they did not experience a natural menopause. Of these censored women, 2466 women had undergone surgery that caused cessation of menstruation, 1547 were still pre-menopausal when they were lost to follow-up and 165 women were pre-menopausal in the questionnaire from 1995.

    Is There A Link Between Birth Control Pills And Higher Breast Cancer Risk

    The Cause and Cure of Early #Menopause

    The need for safe, effective birth control is shared by many women around the world. More than 10 million American women use birth control pills. Besides effectively stopping unwanted pregnancies, birth control pills also help control other conditions, such as acne, PMS, heavy periods, and mood swings. Research also has shown that birth control pills can slightly lower the risk of uterine and ovarian cancer.

    Effective, uncomplicated birth control is important for many women. But its also important that birth control be safe. There are concerns that because birth control pills use hormones to block pregnancy they may overstimulate breast cells, which can increase the risk of breast cancer.

    The concern is greater if youre at high risk for breast cancer because of:

    • a strong family history of the disease
    • past breast biopsies showing abnormal cells
    • you or someone in your family has an abnormal breast cancer gene

    If youve been diagnosed with breast cancer, you SHOULD NOT use contraceptives that use hormones. Thats because theres evidence that these medicines might increase the risk of the cancer coming back .

    The study was published in the Aug. 1, 2014 issue of Cancer Research. Read the abstract of Recent Oral Contraceptive Use by Formulation and Breast Cancer Risk among Women 20 to 49 Years of Age.

    While these results sound very alarming, its important to know three things:

  • This risk varied with the formulation of the birth control pills:
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    If Im Taking Birth Control Pills How Will I Know When Menopause Starts

    You and your doctor will decide together how long you should take this medicine. You can stop taking very-low-dose birth control pills any time, or you can change to regular estrogen replacement therapy. The decision to change from the low-dose birth control pills to estrogen replacement therapy is usually made around the ages of 49 to 52. Your doctor can also measure a hormone called FSH to see if youre in menopause. If the FSH measurement is over 30, youve probably entered menopause.

    Talk to your doctor to see if very-low-dose oral contraceptives might be a good idea for you during your perimenopausal years.

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    Choosing The Right Birth Control During Perimenopause

    If perimenopause causes a natural reduction in estrogen and progesterone levels, how do you know which birth control medication is best for your body?

    Most of the time, perimenopausal women will benefit from a combination birth control method, meaning one containing both estrogen and progesterone. Combination pills are the most common. The other type of birth control is the progestin-only pill, sometimes called the mini pill. This is not usually recommended for perimenopausal women because it does not replace the bodys naturally declining estrogen.

    Narrowing down the choices, many health experts recommend low-dose birth control pills for women in perimenopause. The reduced amount of estrogen, specifically 20 micrograms or less, is considered safer for women as they approach menopause. Companies like Nurx provides access to several low-dose combination birth control options. They all have 20 micrograms of Ethinyl estradiol, which is the synthetic version of estrogen. The exceptions are Lo Loestrin FE and Nuva Ring, containing 10 and 15 micrograms, respectively.

    As with all medications, each drug has side effects. In general, side effects of birth control include breakthrough bleeding, nausea, breast tenderness, headaches, weight gain, mood swings, decreased libido, and vaginal discharge changes.

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