So What Exactly is Post Birth Control Syndrome Anyway?!

 So What Exactly is Post Birth Control Syndrome Anyway?!

Is post birth control syndrome real? I think so!

For some, yes it's very real. For others, maybe not (but more than likely, yes, you just might not recognize that's what it is). For a lot of people, they're promised that hormonal birth control is harmless, you can take it for as long as you want, and then once you decide to get off, your body will "bounce right back" to the old you. Sounds amazing, right?! Not so fast...

You're probably here because you've either heard or experienced the dreaded post-birth control symptoms that many people experience when they get off birth control. And frankly, it sucks. I'm here to tell you that it's real though. Don't believe me? 

According to Dr. Jolene Brighten, women's health naturopathic physician, post-birth control syndrome as "what women report about their experience when they come off of hormonal birth control." So is there an actual diagnosis code for these experiences? Not exactly, but PLENTY of people experience feeling "off" in some way when they ditch the birth control. Maybe they're completely new things you've never dealt with before or maybe they're the exact things you went ON birth control to"fix" and now it's back with a vengeance. It was real for me, it can be real for you, and it's real for so many other people. It sucks. And it will be okay (no, really, it will be). 

Post-birth control symptoms can range from acne, hair loss, gut imbalance, heavy, painful periods, adrenal fatigue, post-pill amenorrhea (temporary loss of menstruation/ovulation), blood sugar disregulation, headaches, inflammation, and more. Since the pill and other hormonal birth controls are designed to shut off the connection of your brain to your ovaries and flatline all your hormones, these symptoms might have temporarily seemed to get better when on birth control. Because your hormonal imbalances that may be associated with these symptoms were suppressed by medication. I like to think of it as a bandaid on your symptoms. It helped clear the acne, helped make the periods less painful, and reduced your migraines. But it's really just a big, fat bandaid.

Is this okay? Well, it really depends on what you're wanting out of your birth control and if you're okay knowing that it isn't a permanent fix for your problems. Since I know a lot of people are on birth control for reasons other than pregnancy prevention, I'm going to bet you or someone you know is too. It's estimated that up to 50% of patients are using hormonal birth control for other issues. That's a lot of people!!  I'm not saying it's a good or bad thing for them because I fully believe that everyone has a right to birth control. I also believe everyone has a right to know how the medication can impact them, both during and after use. Unfortunately that doesn't happen, but as long as you're somewhat aware of the risks and know that it's not "curing" or "fixing" your hormone problems, that's all that matters. The rest is up to you.

A big thing I've come to realize since getting off birth control is that my body is powerful. I pumped it full of synthetic hormones for over SEVEN years. And here I am, two years later, pretty much back to having regular cycles with a normal flow for me and pain free! Our bodies are so magical and they know what to do as long as we give it the proper support. I found that living as toxic-free as possible helped my transition immensely. Since I knew that my body was going to go through this huge change, I wanted to give it the best chance possible at healing. Why would I make that any worse by continuing to use toxins that my body will have to fight off in the process of ALSO fighting for hormone regulation? 

Have you heard of post-birth control syndrome? Do you believe it's real and have you heard of someone who's experienced it? Experience any symptoms yourself? Let me know in the comments below! You're not alone. I promise :)
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