The use of hormonal contraceptives is one of the most effective ways to prevent pregnancy. Vaginal rings, intrauterine devices, injections, pills, skin patches, and implants are different types of hormonal contraceptives. 

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Even though it can also be used to treat heavy menstrual flow (menorrhagia) and skin infections, hormonal contraceptives have various side effects.

What are the 10 Side Effects of Hormonal Contraceptives?

1. Mood Changes

Some women under the influence of hormonal contraceptives have mood swings, which can lead to depression.

Women with a history of depression are most likely to develop mood-related side effects. The high amount of hormones in the body can alter the body’s physiological response, and affect the mood.

2. Migraine attack

Hormonal contraceptives can give rise to severe and disabling headaches, as a result of the effect of estrogen in hormonal contraceptives. This migraine can lead to:

  • Cardiovascular problem
  • Blood clotting
  • Stroke
  • Thrombosis

However, it affects people differently.

3. Anorexia

Loss of appetite is one of the side effects of hormonal contraceptives. These hormones regulate food intake and appetite. 

Specifically, estrogen inhibits the intake of food as it retains much fluid in the body. If there is a high amount of estrogen in the body, you can guess the result. 

4. Breast tenderness

Hormonal contraceptives can cause pain or discomfort in the breast. Although there is little breast pain during women’s periods, it increases at this point.

This effect is only temporary. To reduce breast tenderness, do these:

  • Avoid smoking
  • Eat low-fat diet
  • Avoid taking caffeine 

5. Low sexual drive

There is suppression of ovulation with hormonal contraceptives. As you know, it is during this ovulation there is a high desire for sexual activities.

This has negative impacts on the couple’s sex life and it might destroy their relationships.

6. Irregularities in menstrual flow

With the effect of hormonal contraceptives, the period flow can be changing. These contraceptives affect the lining of the uterus, which causes spotting in between the periods.

The period gets affected in the process and can fluctuate with duration and flow.

7. Irritation of vagina

Vaginal bleeding is one of the side effects of some hormonal contraceptives, which leads to irritation and discomfort. 

In some cases, hormonal contraceptives can be used to treat vaginal bleeding. If you notice this symptom, consult your doctor immediately.

8. Weight gain

A high level of progestin in hormonal contraceptives increases the level of appetite. Likewise, a high level of estrogen also causes fluid retention in the body, which can cause you to gain weight.

This is a temporary symptom. If you notice that the weight gain is severe, you may want to consult your doctor to examine you.

9. Acne

Androgen is the hormone that mostly causes acne on the skin. Some progestin hormones have more androgenic effects which can cause this.

However, estrogen improves the condition of acne.

10.  Nausea

If you have nausea under the influence of hormonal contraceptives, it should go within a few days. If not, consult your doctor.

Hormonal contraceptives with a high level of estrogen irritate the stomach lining, which can cause nausea.

By Manali