Many women use oral contraceptives to prevent pregnancy.
According to the National Center for Health Statistics, 15.9% of women between the ages of 15 and 44 are currently using the birth control pill.
Oral contraceptives come in a few different forms. There is, of course, the pill, the patch, and an injection, Depo-Provera.
These methods of birth control are pretty effective and very convenient for women who do not want to get pregnant.
While they have their benefits, oral contraceptives also have been linked to certain types of cancer.
Breast Cancer Risk
According to a study done by the World Health Organization, taking oral contraceptives can increase the risk of cervical cancer, liver cancer, and breast cancer.
The study found that there are certain carcinogens within the oral contraceptives that can cause breast cancer and other types of cancer.
There are also a number of studies that have linked Hormone Replacement Therapy to breast cancer.
One study highlighted that the risk of cancer dropped dramatically when women stopped taking HRT drugs.
One of the factors for the increased risk of breast cancer is that these methods of birth control use large amounts of estrogen that create mitosis or cell division.
Some other factors include the progestin, which is another hormone found in oral contraceptives. It has also been linked to causing breast cancer.
Some of the other risks associated with taking oral contraceptives are:
- DNA damage
- BMD or Bone Mineral Density loss
- Cognitive activity within the brain
- Blood clots
- Weight gain
This study, one from the Women’s Health Initiative, found that women taking oral contraceptives had 8 more strokes per 10,000 women a year.
This was compared to those taking a placebo. Another study by the University of Texas found that those using the Depro-Provera shot had 6% more Bone Mineral Density Loss.
In addition, a study that was published in the Brain Research Journal compares women on birth control pills to athletes on steroids.
The study found that using these methods of birth control may actually affect parts of the brain that are responsible for higher-order cognitive skills.
A woman on birth control may be a different version of herself. Some other risks can include sexual difficulties, extreme mood changes, and bleeding that is irregular.
In 2006, a study was conducted in Finland that found babies born to mothers who were previously on birth control had more allergies than those born to mothers that had not used an oral contraceptive.
The Bottom Line
By taking oral contraceptive with hormones, you are increasing your risk of getting cancer and having to deal with other health risks.
If you are looking for types of birth control that can prevent pregnancy and lower your risk of diseases, stroke, and other side effects, make sure to look into the products your doctor is offering you prior to their use.