How To Know Your Pregnant On Birth Control Pills – Yes, you can get pregnant during birth control. Here’s what you need to know whether you’re using the pill, IUD, or some other method.
When Allison Smerk found out 14 years ago that she was pregnant with her first child, she had been taking a combined birth control pill (containing both estrogen and progestin) for almost ten years and was always careful to take it consistently. . When Snot, 28, peed on a stick and tested positive, she thought:
How To Know Your Pregnant On Birth Control Pills
. To say it was unplanned is mildly. She and her boyfriend at the time, Dean, were not yet living together in their new home, and had only had a few days at their new job when she received confirmation from the doctor that she was expecting. But after that initial shock, she was delighted to have a baby. Today Dean, who is now her husband, says it was fate and jokes that if it weren’t for the unexpected baby, they wouldn’t have slipped off their ass to start life.
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The story of Smarek is not unusual. According to a 2016 survey of 3,200 women by the Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada (SOGC), one in five had an unplanned pregnancy. Although many methods of contraception are very effective, it is not uncommon for people to become pregnant while using contraception.
Indeed, many people that Dustin Costasco, a pediatrician at McMaster University in Hamilton, see who are having an unplanned pregnancy are using contraception. “Contraception greatly reduces the risk of an unplanned pregnancy, but it’s not perfect,” she says. “It’s a common experience, so women should never be ashamed of not taking the pills or getting pregnant during birth control.” Here’s what you need to know about the risks of getting pregnant while using birth control.
The contraceptive pill is popular with Canadian women. According to the Canadian Health Indicators Survey published by Statistics Canada in 2015, approximately 16% of 15- to 49-year-old non-pregnant Canadian women took the combined pill or progestogen-only pill in the month before the request. And it’s quite effective, though definitely not perfect. Amanda Black, professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Ottawa, notes that both the combined pill and the progestin-only pill have an 8 percent failure rate with typical use. The main reason for the failure? People don’t take it consistently. Costesco says it is especially important for people taking the combination pill to take it every day during the first week of the pack. “If you miss one tablet, even one in the first week, you may not be getting enough estrogen to prevent ovulation, and then you risk becoming pregnant,” she says, explaining that your hormones are losing the previous week. week. off is already starting the egg production process, so skipping a pill in the first seven days can trigger ovulation. With the progestogen-only pill, there is even less room for errors when a delay of more than three hours in taking a dose poses a risk to pregnancy.
The pill can also fail due to an illness where you vomit or have diarrhea as it may not have time to be absorbed into the body before it is, um, excreted. When it comes to medications, certain AEDs can affect absorption and interfere with the pill’s hormone levels, Black says. And there’s a chance that St. John’s wort might be affecting how the pill works, too, he notes.
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If you get pregnant in people who take the combined pill and take a weekly break, there is usually a so-called withdrawal bleeding, which is when the body mimics the menstrual period due to a drop in the hormone at the end of the cycle. But the pill can also mask the easiest symptom of pregnancy: missed periods.
“Some women taking the pill will still have regular withdrawal bleeding, but other women may have very minimal withdrawal bleeding or take it continuously because they want to avoid monthly withdrawal bleeding,” explains Black. So the first symptom may be breast tenderness, nausea, abdominal changes or fatigue.
If you suspect you are pregnant, the first step is to take a home pregnancy test, says Black. If the test is positive, stop taking the pill. (Don’t stop sooner or you risk getting pregnant.) The hormones in the pill you’ve been exposed to so far will not harm your fetus, says Black. Costco agrees. “Pregnancy is a state of high sex hormone levels, so it’s very similar to the clinical effects of the pill,” she says. “And so, the placenta actually prevents these hormones from entering the developing pregnancy. They are filtered. “
IUDs are a very effective birth control method, says Costco. The copper IUD has a failure rate of only 0.8 percent, while the IUD has a failure rate of just 0.2 percent. The copper IUD is effective immediately after insertion, and the hormonal type is effective within five days after insertion, she explains. And since you don’t have to do anything after it’s installed, and you have control to make sure it is inserted correctly, there is no chance of user error.
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The only risk is that within the five years of the IUD’s life, there is a three to five percent chance that it will be excreted from the body. “If someone notices that they suddenly have heavy bleeding with clots with the IUD inserted, it may mean that the IUD has been removed,” explains Black. If this happens, do a string test to make sure the insert is still in place; If you cannot find a thread, make an appointment with your doctor to make sure everything is in place, and in the meantime use a replacement contraceptive such as condoms.
If you become pregnant it can be quite rare, but some people become pregnant with an IUD. For people using a copper IUD, the first sign of pregnancy may still be a missed period. However, many women treated with a hormonal IUD have missed or very light periods, which can make it difficult to use as a measure. For these women, sudden breast soreness and nausea may be the first indications that they are pregnant. But if you’ve just had an IUD, don’t assume that your pregnancy is necessarily responsible for these symptoms. Costescu points out that during the first three months of inserting a hormonal IUD, you may experience breast tenderness, slight nausea, and pelvic cramps.
If you suspect you are pregnant, do a home pregnancy test. If the result is positive, it’s important to see your doctor as soon as possible to get an ultrasound. This is an urgent matter because if you become pregnant with an intrauterine device, it is more likely to be an ectopic pregnancy, meaning the embryo has been implanted in one of the fallopian tubes and not the uterus, which can be dangerous and must be treated immediately.
If it is not ectopic and you want to continue the pregnancy, your doctor will likely recommend the removal of the IUD if the cords are visible as the IUD pregnancy is a bit more at risk, says Costco.
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“While many pregnancies will be smooth, there is a higher risk of premature delivery and early dehydration,” she explains. Black adds that you can be sure that the IUD will not cause fetal defects.
There is a slight risk of miscarriage after the IUD is removed, but Costco says the number is difficult to provide as there are no studies and many early pregnancies are not viable.
If your doctor cannot find the strings, the IUD must remain in place, and you will be monitored with ultrasound throughout your pregnancy to make sure everything is okay. For example, your doctor will watch the pad as close to the amniotic sac as the device may tear it.
There are several other birth control options, including the patch, vaginal ring, and Depo-Provera injection. Black says the failure rate with typical use of the patch and ring is the same as the pill: eight percent. The Depo-Provera injection has a failure rate of just 6% in typical use.
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For all three types of contraception, adherence is the highest risk factor. They must be used as directed to operate effectively. Costco says with a patch that you change once a week (think of it as a bandage), one problem is that it may accidentally come off. Speaking of the ring, he explains that changing it in time (users themselves put a new ring in the vagina once a month) is crucial.
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