How To Stop Taking Birth Control Pills Without Getting Pregnant

How to go off your birth control

Once you’ve determined why you want to stop using birth control, how you do it will depend on the type of birth control you use. Here are some tips on how to safely stop using birth control, as well as what might happen.

You can actually stop using oral contraceptives (also known as “the pill”), a birth control patch, or a vaginal ring cold turkey.

“There’s no harm in stopping whenever you want to stop if you’re on a form of birth control that you control yourself,” Dr. Brant says.

However, she advises completing your cycle rather than stopping in the middle of it because you can typically anticipate getting your period a few days after stopping.

“Just finish your current round of birth control and then switch to your new form of birth control or stop using it completely to avoid messing up your period,” she advises. Try to speak with your doctor first, just to be safe, if you need to stop taking it sooner, like in the event of side effects.

You must schedule a visit with your healthcare provider to have any intrauterine devices or hormonal implants removed.

Tempted to try to remove your IUD on your own? Although one study found that 1 in 5 women is able to successfully take out her own IUD, Dr. Brant doesn’t recommend it.

The main risk is that you pull on the IUD string and it dislodges but doesn’t come out, which can be uncomfortable and painful, according to Dr. Brant says. “Now that you need a medical professional to remove it, you’ve transformed a non-urgent situation into one that is much more time-sensitive.” ”.

How soon your period will return after having an IUD or hormonal implant removed is difficult to predict. It depends on your menstrual cycle right now, whether you used a hormonal or non-hormonal IUD, how long it takes for the hormones to leave your body, whether you used a hormonal or non-hormonal IUD, etc.

Expect your period to arrive at any time between the day your period is removed and four weeks from that time, says Dr. Brant says. Based on the specific type of birth control you’ve been using and whether you had regular cycles prior to starting birth control, your doctor may be able to provide you with a more precise estimate.

However, in the interim, you can probably anticipate some light spotting and cramping.

Pregnancy prevention shots like Depo-Provera® essentially provide your body with a hefty dose of birth control intended to stay in your system for three months — which makes going off this type of birth control a bit more nebulous than the rest.

Don’t get your next shot if you want to stop using this method of birth control. But be aware that it might take longer than the first three months for your periods and fertility to return.

“In some people, the hormones don’t wear off for more than three months,” Dr And it might take even longer for your period to return, says Brant. ”.

Oral contraceptives (AKA the pill)

If you’re on the pill, Dr. According to Millheiser, it typically takes most women between zero and six months after stopping birth control pills for ovulation to resume. This can vary from person to person. An egg is released from the ovary during ovulation in preparation for possible sperm fertilization. If this doesn’t occur, the egg and uterine lining are shed, resulting in your period. The point being: Ovulation is necessary for naturally becoming pregnant. Most birth control pills contain estrogen, which suppresses ovulation and causes pregnancy.

When considering starting a family, follow these steps: “I recommend to stop taking birth control pills three months before you actually want to start trying,” advises Dr. Millheiser. Using the aforementioned example, this implies that you would discontinue using birth control pills in June (but begin using a prenatal). You could use an alternative method of birth control, such as a condom, up until September since you want to wait until then to start trying. By September, you have three months to try to get your body back to ovulating.

Dr. Smith continues, “You don’t necessarily know what your individual body will do to get your cycle back.” Millheiser. You might become pregnant right away in September, so why not stop taking pills three months beforehand and see what happens? You’ll be three months ahead of where you’d be if you continued taking the pills until September, at the very least.

In 2013, researchers reported that oral contraceptives users experienced a temporary delay in time to pregnancy (TPP—yes, there’s an acronym for that) compared to those discontinuing barrier contraception methods like condoms. “But after that, monthly fertility rates are comparable to those of women stopping other methods of contraception,” says co-author Elizabeth Hatch.

If you’ve been taking the pill for a while, there’s good news: the researchers found that using oral contraceptives for a longer period of time increased the likelihood of becoming pregnant. Contrary to those who had used the drugs for less than two years, women who had taken them for more than four or five years had higher pregnancy rates. The medical community’s final assessment of the study is as follows: “Women who have used oral contraceptives for a long time should feel reassured as there was no evidence that long-term use of oral contraceptives has adverse effects on fecundability. Comparatively to those who stop using barrier methods, both short-term and long-term oral contraceptive users are likely to experience a temporary delay in conception. ”.

To prevent having a period, can I use ordinary birth control pills or do I need special pills?

There are birth control pill regimens made to stop bleeding for three months or even for a year. However, by consistently taking monophasic birth control pills for the full three weeks of the active pill cycle, you can avoid getting your period. Don’t take the inactive pills and begin taking a new pack of pills as soon as possible if you’re using these to stop your period.

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