However, many are unaware of this and resort to taking the morning after pill too frequently. Taking this pill too frequently can have a number of short and long term side effects.
On this episode of the Health Lounge with Stephanie, Phramacist Nurudeen Oketade educates us about the mechanism of this pill, right and wrong use of the pill as well as its side effects.
If you have ever wondered if this pill you take frequently poses any risk to your health, then you should read this interview or watch the video below
Q- What are Birth Control Pills?
They are pills that contain hormones usually produced by the body but in this case we are using them to prevent conception or pregnancy. Some are combined having estrogen and progesterone while others have the progesterone only.
Q- How does the pill work?
A- The postinor 2 i.e levonorgesterol, the generic name is a progesterone analog. It works the same way as progesterone preventing conception by either thickening the wall of the cervix or preventing the sperm and the ovum from merging
Q- How can this pill be misused?
A- It is meant to be used at least 2-3 times in a month but in some cases people use it 4, 5,6,7 times and there’s going to be a side effect.
Q-What are the side effects of the Misuse of Postinor 2?
A- From some studies that are available now, they haven’t been able to get a long term effect of Postinor 2. Its just new in the market. It could cause hormone imbalance in the body. When you are taking it, you are replacing the hormones in the body and suppressing the hormones present.
The major side effects include; breakthrough bleeding, Nausea, vomitting, weight gain.The breakthrough bleeding is as a result of the suppression of the endogenous hormones in the body. This is bleeding when it is not your menstrual flow; when you’re not due. After taking the postinor2, some women experience bleeding after a day or two which lasts for about 5-7 days. In some it could be less. In some cases it could be spotting or actual bleeding like the menstrual bleeding.
Q- There is a popular belief that overuse of Postinor 2 can cause infertility. Is this a myth or fact?
A- *giggles* Its in between actually. Its safe to follow the studies. From studies that have been done outside Nigeria based on the women they picked in that study that have used Postinor 2 frequently there was no effect on their fertility but that is just one study and the fact cannot be cannot be proven worldwide. Anything that has to do with hormones, deregulating the normal hormone system of the body usually has a long term effect. It could cause infertility if you suppress the normal progesterone secretion in the body which is necessary for the normal conception. If that is not available, then conception cannot be.
So in the case of overuse especially more than 3-4 times in a month continuously it could lead to infertility but not in every woman, just some women and you don’t know who you are *giggles*
Q-How effective is this pill compared to other forms of contraception?
A- If you are relying on Postinor 2, there are STD’s, HIV and other things you are not preventing except for pregnancy. So its safer to take condoms as well.
As far as proper screening is done for you by a gynecologist OR doctor in the hospital and find that you are clear then you can opt for the other forms of birth control; the Intra-Uterine device or monthly injections. Those are safer.
Q- When exactly should this pill be used?
A- Postinor 2 should be within 72 -120 hours after unprotected sex but its more effective within the first 72 hours after that it’s less effective.
Q-Under what condition should this pill not be considered?
A- In cases where there is already a confirmed pregnancy it should not be used because it could lead to ectopic pregnancy land other complications in pregnancy
Stephanie: Thank you so much Pharmacist Nurudeen for educating us on the side effects of the misuse of Postinor 2. We appreciate your coming on set to educate us on these things.
Pharmacist Nurudeen: You are welcome.
You may be thinking I have always used the Postinor 2. What other options do I have?
You have several other options. Download the free guide below; “13 different ways you can prevent pregnancy” Its not just the pills and Condoms.
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