Despite being a major benefit to the overall quality of life worldwide, birth control is still widely misunderstood. Either because of a lapse in sex education, traditional stigma, the spread of urban myths, or false information from groups opposed to contraception, many have the wrong idea about birth control. Some people will believe these falsehoods but still practice contraception for practical reasons, while others will avoid birth control entirely because the untruths are too persuasive.
Given how helpful contraception can be for people looking to control their lives, maximize their education and career opportunities, and provide the best outcomes for the families they want, it is important to dispel several of the most pervasive birth control myths.
One common misconception — especially insidious in our image-conscious society — is that birth control will make users gain weight. While hormonal contraception does have side effects, weight gain is not one of them.
No studies show that birth control pills impact body weight. Because many people start birth control during important changes in their lives, a weight shift of five or fewer pounds can occur, but no evidence links this change to the treatment itself.
Perhaps the grimmest of these myths is most commonly spread about birth control pills (IUDs and other implants have also faced accusations), leading some to believe these medications can cause cancer. Thankfully, the opposite is actually true.
Hormonal contraception has effectively reduced users’ chances of developing certain cancers, particularly endometrial and ovarian cancer. Rather than endanger patients’ lives, birth control pills protect users from more than just unwanted pregnancies.
If there’s any birth control myth we can debunk at ARC Fertility, it’s that taking contraception can negatively impact a person’s natural fertility. While permanent sterilization certainly can end fertility, hormonal birth control temporarily suppresses reproductive functions so long as patients take it regularly. Once someone stops treatment, their body quickly resumes its fertility, and they can conceive as easily as anyone of their age or health.
A person who takes birth control for years, so that their bodies age out of peak fertility, will experience the typical drop in ovarian quality and quantity, but this is not due to their contraceptive treatments. In fact, birth control is one of the best ways to ensure the ideal and most conscious use of one’s fertility to build their desired family.
Birth control is a net gain for society, offering people more autonomy over their bodies and futures, and letting families grow at their desired rate. Contraception reduces teen pregnancy, leading to higher rates of education and a higher quality of life wherever used at individual discretion.
ARC Fertility supports the use of birth control to prevent pregnancy or to regulate hormonal reactions and menstrual cycles. It is important to discuss birth control so you can choose which method is the best for you. Our expert providers can help clients decide when to stop using birth control and maximize their chances at a successful family-building journey, using the most effective techniques and treatments available.