The Pill

The Pill

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This is a discussion on The Pill within the Health and Fitness forums, part of the Topics of Interest category; Hi. I'm talking about birth control. I am not happy with the healthcare system and have not had good experiences. ...

  1. #1

    The Pill

    Hi. I'm talking about birth control. I am not happy with the healthcare system and have not had good experiences. So, allow me and yourself to vent, and I'd appreciate some advice.

    First off, I was on Yaz. I felt more tired, kind of depressive and changes in my mood. I wasn't sure if this was also caused by a bad relationship. Or was the relationship bad because I was moody? Not sure which goes with which, meaning who the heck was I then, and what the heck caused it? That is not a reassuring thing at all...
    That has also been off the market. I'm not too knowledgeable. Whether the doctors prescribed it to the wrong people or it really affected people the wrong way.

    I was around 18 and noticed changes in my body, so I looked things up and thought I was pregnant. I was being ridiculous, truthfully. But, I was frantic and panicking, and went from x to y, and there was no comfort. There was no check up after taking birth control. Hello. If I take something that is messing with my system, please make sure that everything stays okay...

    So, paranoid there. Then, I go to a gynecologist. She is quick in and out the door. Makes me wait for god knows why, comes back, makes small talk while she's 'investigating' me, doesn't talk about birth control or I don't think she fully grasped my situation. Didn't give me time to talk about it. Said things like encouraging me to have sex, if I use a condom, and that it's good to once in a while. Like it's an option only.. So not personal and unprofessional. And to get a gynecologist or a doctor, I have to wait so long, go through one person, one place to the next. No one fucking cares.

    Now, from her, who didn't even give me a follow up, I got a prescription for Alesse. Okay, I went to the pharmacie. And got Alysena 28. Which was recalled because it had too many placebos. I read that Alysena is a generic band that ties in with Alesse, maybe cheaper or something. But, it was recalled. Thus, I'm feeling paranoid and that it's unsafe. Do I go back and ask for Alesse? Is Alesse good? What pill is safe? If I have to pick another pill, do I have to have a doctor just sign a freaking paper, to get what I want. I have other things in my life to do. I want to be safe. Am I supposed to run around to x and y, who don't care that I'm a or b? Jesus.

    Am I ever supposed to feel safe having sex?
    P.s., this is probably unclear and I probably read up on information too much and freak myself out, but this is a serious thing. And please, no stupid, sarcastic, condescending answers.



  2. #2

    The pill - if I may speak on behalf of the women here - is trial and error. It just takes a while to find out what you and your body prefers when it comes to this. I am not sure where you live so I can't really say anything about your healthcare system. But changing doctors might be a good idea. It's your health after all so I would definitely takes this seriously and don't take no for an answer.

    My gf has been having severe mood swings (sometimes I really want to put her in the washing machine delicates program 10 degrees to cool her down sometimes) as well as of lately and I think the pill is too strong (her boobs are humongous now). Another thing is that her sex drive isn't as high as it was before and I think/know that this is all related to the pill.

  3. #3

    Hi LostGirl,

    It sounds like you have some serious anxiety happening over this, which is unfortunate because sex shouldn’t make you anxious. Sorry to hear that you have had such negative experiences.

    It can be difficult to stand up for yourself with doctors and some doctors are pushier and listen less than others, but the more that you’re able to do that, the better your experiences in almost all areas of healthcare will be. If you don’t feel as though you’re able to do that yourself, you might consider asking a friend or a family member to come with you. I also find that writing my questions down in advance helps. If all else fails, you can just give your note to the doctor and let them answer your questions that way.

    It’s possible that your gynecologist wasn’t aware of why you were coming in for a visit. Ideally, she should have asked you. I’m a bit confused by what you have written – were you wanting to discuss your birth control options with her or did you make an appointment because you thought you were pregnant? In both cases, that seems a little bit unusual to me because I’ve always gotten my birth control prescriptions through family doctors and done my own pregnancy tests (at least initially – obviously a positive pregnancy test warrants further investigation). As far as I know, those are not the usual reasons that people book an appointment with a gynecologist; she may have very well assumed that you were in for a routine pap smear (this is why nobody should ever assume things). In terms of the comments that your gynecologist made, they seem very normal to me, since gynecologists deal directly with issues that are related to sexual and reproductive health. If your gynecologist made you uncomfortable, you can always get a different referral for the future and/or ask that a nurse be present during your exam. Don’t suffer in silence – there are lots of different options available to you.

    I sympathise with your frustration regarding wait-times and referrals to specialists – I’m going through some of that myself at the moment and some days it’s enough to make you want to scream. Something else that you may want to consider (that I’ve discovered myself) is that unless you are seriously ill, there is sometimes communication lost between your primary-care doctor and your specialist, so don't assume that your specialist knows your entire medical history or even much about why you're there.

    You will not get a follow-up visit from most specialists simply because they are in such high demand. If you're paying out of pocket, this is something that you can be grateful for; if your visits are covered, then try to understand that a specialist's time is better spent helping someone who truly is ill rather than making a lot of unnecessary appointments to reassure people (it seems like you have a bit more anxiety in this regard than the average person). It can be frustrating if you are the kind of person who needs reassurance that everything really is alright, that they didn't lose your test results/file, etc., but you just have to trust that the system is working as it should (easier said than done when you’re already anxious about it, hmm?). If you do have follow-up questions about tests or medications, you can always call back and speak to a nurse – if s/he is unable to answer your question for you, then they will have your specialist call you or book a follow-up if it is necessary.

    Like condoms, seatbelts, elevators, airplanes, there are cases in which birth control is recalled. As you noted, it was because there were more placebos in a series of batches, not because of a fault in the pills. It’s never happened to me, but I can’t imagine how upsetting it would be to have a birth control recall. If this is something that causes you undue worry, you may want to consider using a backup form of contraception, such as a condom or a diaphragm. Unless you are screening your sexual partners for STIs, you should always be using a condom anyways.

    If you don’t think that the pill is your cup of tea, I would encourage you to explore other options, like the shot or an IUD. However, there is nothing wrong with Alesse/Alysena as brands of birth control and I would encourage you to stick with whatever form of the pill gives you the fewest side effects. If you do need to switch brands because of side effects, you’ll have to book another appointment with your doctor or go into a clinic to get a new prescription. Again, I understand that it can be frustrating to do so much running around, but unfortunately finding a brand/formulation that works for you is trial and error and otherwise that is just how the system works. Since we’re talking about medication, it isn’t quite as easy as giving someone a different pair of shoes; depending on your medical history there may be some pills that are better suited to you than others. If you need to switch brands, a doctor will compare your reactions to different levels of the hormones in the pill to make an educated guess about what brand would be the best next guess. For example, I’m being switched from Alesse onto Min-Ovral because the formulation of Alesse was working for me, but the hormone levels were not enough to fully suppress ovulation in my case, resulting in some really not-fun ovarian cysts (these are not caused by Alesse, though they're a completely unrelated issue).

    As I mentioned before, sex really shouldn’t cause you so much anxiety. If you’re nervous about the pill, an IUD may be something you want to consider. I am too squeamish for one myself, but all of the women I know that have them love them and it does decrease the margin of potential misuse/error by a lot. If it’s sex in general that’s giving you anxiety, maybe you’re not ready yet. It wasn’t clear whether or not you’ve had it yet or not, but either way, you shouldn’t have sex if it makes you uncomfortable. There’s nothing wrong with waiting or taking a break, whichever feels right to you.
    67536, DeductiveReasoner, 67536 and 27 others thanked this post.

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  5. #4

    I've been on Yasminelle for years, it's one of the newest generation pills that have lower dosages than the previous and cause the least side effects. If you don't make any mistake, like forget to take one or combine it with one of the few substances that counteracts it you are practically 100% safe.

    I know that gynecologists are the ones who usually prescribe pills but the right doctor for that is an endocrinologist, as it's a hormone and they are the experts on hormones.
    67536, 67536, 67536 and 12 others thanked this post.

  6. #5

    Finding the right pill might take time, it's as someone else said, a trial and error kind of thing. I remember that the first pill brand I've tried made me depressed/moody that I'd feel down and cry for no apparent reason (a reminder of how it might feel during future menopause, when hormones goes cray? :P). It might also affect sex drive. And then in my case, a rarer side effect was that my first cycles of period were more painful and abundant. I started taking the pills as my period is very unruly, but I never had pain or abundant blood flow 'till I took the pills.

    But pills are not always 100% safe. You must be careful whenever you take meds as some meds can affect the pills' birth control efficiency; also, you have to be careful if you vomit it out or maybe even when you have diarrhea. I'd suggest you go to the doctor to get this all explained well.

    Also, I've heard that taking the pills for too many years straight might affect future chances of getting pregnant, so it might be good to stop after a few years.

    In any ways, personally I think that if a woman is healthy and has regular period, then it might be better to not take pills at all and resort to other ways of birth control, since pills are artificial chemicals affecting the system.

    Also, almost forgot to mention... Some might gain or lose weight, or have pimples, or have bigger breasts... In my case, I think that I've got slightly bigger breasts, but I also started to have some "small hard stuffs" inside my breasts (sorry I don't know what they are called in English). I have to start keep checking them with echography every 1 or 1/2 years, so that in case they get too big or grow too fast then I'd need to be operated and take them out. Thought I've stopped taking pills since some months ago, so hopefully they'll get smaller.
    But you might also want to pay attention to these things too when considering pills.
    67536, 67536, 67536 and 12 others thanked this post.

  7. #6

    Quote Originally Posted by All in Twilight View Post
    The pill - if I may speak on behalf of the women here - is trial and error. It just takes a while to find out what you and your body prefers when it comes to this. I am not sure where you live so I can't really say anything about your healthcare system. But changing doctors might be a good idea. It's your health after all so I would definitely takes this seriously and don't take no for an answer.

    My gf has been having severe mood swings (sometimes I really want to put her in the washing machine delicates program 10 degrees to cool her down sometimes) as well as of lately and I think the pill is too strong (her boobs are humongous now). Another thing is that her sex drive isn't as high as it was before and I think/know that this is all related to the pill.
    Hm. That's true. I'm trying Alesse tonight. I will find another doctor.
    I hope things get better for your girlfriend.

  8. #7

    Thank you.
    I was stressed.
    I'm feeling better now. I'm going to try Alesse tonight and see how it goes.
    monemi, monemi, monemi and 12 others thanked this post.

  9. #8

    I went through a bunch of different brands of birth control pills. Heavy hormone and light hormone and what a disaster. I couldn't handle the rollercoaster of trial and error and was about ready to punch my dr and empty a few bottles of birth control pills down their throat until they choked to death on them. At that point, I stuck to non-hormonal birth control.

    Funny enough, I was later contraindicated for hormonal birth control due to obstetric cholestasis. My body really doesn't respond well to hormones.

    You really have to be your own advocate when dealing with healthcare practitioners and choose them wisely. I know exactly how frustrating the pill can be. I have no patience for trial error with medications but you have to figure out what you are comfortable with.
    67536 thanked this post.


     

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