Birth Control

The Basics of Low Hormone Birth Control

Sep 6 • Hormone Balancing, Menopause, Pregnancy • 20634 Views • No Comments on The Basics of Low Hormone Birth Control

For many women, birth control is a fact of life. Regardless of their preferred contraception method, women use birth control as an essential element of their health and family planning. Pharmaceutical birth control methods typically rely on one of two distinct combination of hormone supplements. The combination birth control pill utilizes both estrogen and progestin, while the minipill relies exclusively on progestin.  For women who wish to reduce their exposure to the hormone supplements found in birth control pills, low hormone birth control provides the safety and security of standard pharmaceutical contraceptives with significantly less chemical interaction.


How Do Conventional Birth Control Pills Work?

Birth control pills rely on one of two different contraception techniques, depending upon the specific hormones found within the product. Combination birth control pills prevent pregnancy by repressing ovulation as well as by thickening cervical mucus and the lining of the uterus, preventing sperm from reaching an egg. The minipill, a progestin-only approach to birth control, thickens cervical mucus and significantly thins the lining of the endometrium. Minipill dosages have also been observed to prevent ovulation, although this is by no means an established, predictable result of usage. Minipills typically contain lower hormone levels than combination pills, as they do not rely on estrogen to prevent impregnation.


How Do Low Hormone Birth Control Pills Work?

Unlike standard combination or minipill birth control products, low hormone birth control pills contain significantly reduced levels of estrogen, ranging from 0.03mg in low-dose pills to 0.02mg in ultra low-dose pills. Studies have shown that both low-dose and ultra low-dose pills provide the necessary levels of estrogen to ensure contraception. Low-dose pills typically create fewer adverse side effects in users. Ultra low-dose pills, while still protecting against pregnancy, may still induce monthly bleeding and spotting in users. These side effects are not an indication of contraception failure, however.


How Do I Know If Low Hormone Birth Control Pills Are Right For Me? 

If you have experienced unpleasant side effects from combination or minipill birth control pills, low-dose birth control pills may be a suitable replacement for your contraception needs. That being said, your optimal birth control method can only be determined by your doctor. Depending on your existing physiological conditions, you may be compatible with these contraceptive products. Common brands of reduced hormone pills include:

– LoOvral (0.03 mg ethinyl estradiol – 0.3 mg norgestrel)

Desogen (0.03 mg ethinyl estradiol and 0.15 mg desogestrel)

Nordette (0.03 mg ethinyl estradiol and 0.15 mg levognorgestrel)


What Are The Advantages of Low Hormone Birth Control Pills?

Many women choose low hormone birth control pills in order to reduce the amount of estrogen entering their body through artificial means. As significant increases in estrogen have been linked to a variety of hazardous health conditions, such as breast cancer, low hormone birth control pills can help to ensure reliable contraception without these potentially life-threatening side effects. Low hormone birth control pills can also help women who suffer from painful or unnaturally large periods. Studies have also linked these contraceptive products with reduced levels of acne, improved skin health and diminished side effects for women during menopause.


In A Nutshell: Low hormone birth control pills are an excellent contraception method for women who may suffer from uncomfortable side effects of standard combination or minipill birth control pills. Additionally, the lower doses of estrogen found in these pills can provide increased peace of mind for women weary of increasing their body’s natural estrogen levels. As always, consulting your personal doctor can help you determine if these birth control pills are compatible with your own unique physiology.



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