Why skipping your periods while on contraceptive pills isn’t as bad as you think?
Many women may want to skip their periods for a number of reasons, such as travel, a busy week, painful menstruation, etc.
For those of you taking combined oral contraceptive pills, most of your pill packets would contain 21 active pills (pills with hormones) and 7 placebo pills (pills with no hormones) or it would be a packet with only 21 active pills and
instructions to skip 7 days of pill taking. For eg. Yasmin, Mercilon or Diane 35.
Some newer combined oral contraceptive pill packet have much lower levels of hormones and they have distributed the hormone across more days giving you a packet of 24 active pills and 4 placebo pills. Such are like the contraceptive pills called Yaz.
To make it clear, new guideline states that it is SAFE to skip a period. It is SAFE to have less than 12 periods a year. In fact, it is safe to skip 1 or 2 periods in a row. That way instead of having 12 periods in a year you can have only 4-6 periods in a year without the effectiveness of the contraceptive pill being affected. There is no additional risk of exposure to the estrogen in to contraceptive pills whether you choose to suppress the periods or whether you choose to have them. NO Additional risk of blood clots, NO additional risk of breast cancers!
How to skip a period?
Being on combined contraceptive pills allows you to skip a period by simply omitting the placebo pills.
So what you do is to go straight from the last active pill in one packet to the first active pill in the next packet.
What are the benefits if I skip a period?
1. Reduce Period-related Problems
a. Less blood loss hence saving body’s iron stores and that equals more energy, less fatigue
b. Less premenstrual syndrome like irritability, low mood and menstrual cramps
c. Less headaches or migraines
2. Less Hassel
a. Period free vacation and holidays
3. Save Money
a. Less would be spent on period products like pads or tampons
There are some few possible side effects you might have to deal with. These can include some spotting in between. Before you embark on this journey to safely skip a period routinely, please speak to your doctors to fully understand this better so you have the right information to use your contraceptive pills appropriately so that you can skip a period confidently knowing also how to deal with the possible minor side effects.