What no one tells you about coming off the pill…
When you are on the pill you hear of all the great things that come with it, no periods for a start, no acne and waving goodbye to the worst cramps of your life. But when you are coming off it, there seems to be no rulebook on what to expect.
I’m 10 weeks into coming off the pill and after the initial shock of my first period in nearly 10 years, here’s my no BS guide to surviving your hormones after coming off the pill. Now this is not an exhaustive guide, and your symptoms might be different from mine, but I do hope it can help you on your way to navigate the world of hormone free birth control. I should note here that regardless of your birth control, you can get pregnant straight away when
you come off your chosen method so, ahem, be careful if that is something you are trying to avoid.
The first thing to note is that the cramps will come back along with a withdrawal bleed, which normally lasts for around a week. Think of it like your pill break. Often this will be similar to your monthly bleed as most women stop bleeding before the end of
their seven day break. And the cramps will be pretty intense and painful, so make a hot water bottle and make comfy as you’ll be in for a bit of a ride. After one month the common symptoms of coming off the pill begin to fade.
The hormones wash out of the system pretty quickly, so things that you would notice within a month include that your libido may start to increase and boobs might start to shrink – which was bad news for me as I only started on an A cup.
You might also notice a bit of weight loss, although it’s not true weight loss, just loss of water retention that can be caused by progesterone. So if you feel a bit lighter and less bloated, that will be why.
About 3 months off the pill you’ll notice a possible dip in mood and the monthly mood swings might start to appear. If this is less than normal for you then please contact your doctor and check out your symptoms to be on the safe side.
After this point, you will be mostly back to pre-pill level and all the wonderful things that go with it. Remember to always be stocked with tampons and pads, because if you are like me, you’ve not needed one in a decade and you don’t want to be caught out.
By Mollie Netwomen ambassador