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Does Birth Control Cause Infertility? The Truth Behind It

May 16, 2023

Primary Care

Does Birth Control Cause Infertility? The Truth Behind It

There has been a constant debate in the medical world, “can birth control cause infertility?” The quick answer is no. The reason behind this debate is that there has been a misconception surrounding birth control that it negatively impacts fertility. Studies have consistently shown that contraceptive medications do not affect fertility. But instead of taking this debate forward, it is necessary to understand every aspect that surrounds birth control and infertility, and therefore, this blog will address the matter and try to answer the question, “Does birth control affect fertility?”

Relation Between Birth Control and Infertility

Contraceptives are used to prevent unwanted pregnancies and protect against STIs. However, they do not cause infertility.

However, certain factors can affect fertility, and birth control may mask these underlying issues. For example, if you have PCOS, endometriosis, or blocked fallopian tubes. In that case, birth control can prevent you from realizing the problem. Additionally, certain types of birth control can temporarily affect the menstrual cycle, resulting in conceiving challenges.

Signs of Infertility

The most common sign of infertility is the inability to conceive a child. However,

For women,

  • Hormone changes
  • Skin issues
  • Excessive weight gain
  • Decreased libido

For men,

  • Decreased libido
  • Difficulty with maintaining an erection
  • Swelling in the testicles

Types of Birth Control

Selecting the right option of birth control can make a lot of difference.

  1. Standard Measures

    Regarding standard measures, common options include male and female condoms, the diaphragm, the cervical cap, and the contraceptive sponge.

  2. Temporary Hormonal Options

    Options include contraceptive pills, the vaginal ring, a skin patch, and contraceptive injections. These are considered as it is necessary to use daily, weekly, or monthly.

  3. Long-Term Hormonal Options

    Long-term options for birth control include the copper IUD, the hormonal IUD, and the contraceptive implant. These last three to 10 years after insertion, depending on the device.

  4. Sterilizing

    Sterilization is a permanent method, which includes tubal ligation for women and vasectomy for men.

  5. Spermicide Gel

    Spermicide is a contraceptive that kills sperm. Vaginal pH regulator gel stops sperm from moving, so they can't get to an egg to fertilize it.

Despite several options, it's important to be aware of contraception, intake time, and other factors. For more information, call your medical professionals.

Chances of Pregnancy After Discontinuing Birth Control

Birth control has no long-term effect on women’s fertility. Studies have often shown that you can conceive a child even after discontinuing birth control. The pregnancy duration depends on the person’s condition, and it can take months for the body to realign to its natural hormonal levels.

Timeline of Pregnancy After Discontinuing Birth Control

Once the body is in its natural state, it returns to ovulating. For most women, once they discontinue birth control, their cycles will return to normal within a few months. In some cases, it may take a little longer.

Research around contraceptives shows that some women may experience a temporary delay in pregnancy, but fertility returns to normal.

The Use of Birth Control to Prevent Sexually Transmitted Infections

No evidence suggests that birth control can prevent STIs without a condom. Oral contraceptives like pills are very effective at preventing unwanted pregnancies but cannot protect against STIs. The only way to be protected is by using a condom.

Potential Effects of Discontinuing Birth Control

Certain effects of discontinuing birth control include,

    • Shifts in the menstrual cycle
    • Menorrhagia
    • Premenstrual Syndrome
    • Mood swings
    • Acne
    • Changes in libido

Debunking Fertility Myths

Birth control doesn’t affect fertility. However, considering so many myths surrounding it, let’s take a deep dive into it

  1. Creates Complications in Fertility

    Except for sterilization, birth control does not cause harm to natural fertility. Your body quickly resumes its natural reproduction state, and most people can conceive even if they’ve used birth control for years.

  2. Effectively Protects Against STIs

    Birth control can help to reduce the possibility of contracting an STI, but they are ineffective. Although condoms are effective against unwanted pregnancy, they can protect against STIs.

  3. Makes You Gain Weight

    No evidence shows that birth control causes weight gain. Weight gaining may be linked to other lifestyle factors.

Seek Medical Advice for Difficulty in Conceiving

If you are experiencing difficulties in conceiving after discontinuing birth control, understand the reasons. One year is the standard duration given to couples when trying to conceive. Secondly, your body may take time to reach its natural fertility state. Therefore, give your body time to recover.

Visit MI Express Primary Care for Better Health

Fertility issues are natural. However, you can live a healthy life with proper guidance. For that, visit MI Express Primary Care today. Our experienced medical professionals are ready to provide you with compassionate care. We're here for you if you want birth control and fertility assistance. Take charge of your health and book your appointment today!

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