What I’ve Learned Since Going Off Birth Control
Back in April when I was diagnosed with Candida, I did a lot of research online. A LOT. I still look things up. Anyway, while I was going down the Candida internet hole, I found out that being on birth control for long period of time causes Candida. I had been on birth control for 11 years. When I finished my pack in May, I stopped taking it. Since going off of it, I’ve learned a lot about what it can do to your body.
You Don’t Get Your Period Right Away
I thought that my cycle would stay the same but that is not the case at all. Post birth control you do have a bleeding period but this is not you period. Mine came about 3 weeks after stopping, one week before I thought I would get my period. If you’re planning on getting pregnant, it is advised to wait until you get your period first. It can also take a few months to get your period back while your body is balancing out its hormones. I didn’t get my period in July or August. In September there was a day where I thought I got my period but it only lasted a day so I’m not sure what that was.
I’ve been using the Natural Fertility Method to try to track my period by tracking my BBT (basal body temperature), cervix position and cervical mucus. I’m currently using about 5 different apps to help me out. Based on my data, I thought I was going to my period a few weeks ago but it hasn’t happened. Since it’s taking so long for me to get, I did go to the doctors and everything seems fine and my doctor isn’t too worried at the moment. My annual is in December and we are going to re-evaluate then.
Losing hair is normal but I’ve been shedding like crazy. At first, I didn’t think much of it until my hairdresser brought it up to me while I was getting my hair cut. She asked if I was on any new medications and I said no except some supplements for my Candida which really shouldn’t cause that side effect. As I was sitting in the chair I was thinking about me going off birth control. As soon as I got to my car, I looked it up online. And sure enough it is a very common side effect and usually lasts about 6 months.
Overall Feel Better
This one is very hard to describe. This podcast does a great way of explaining it. Basically, most girls go on birth control in their late teens and early 20’s when they are still finding themselves and hormones are changing. We are on birth control for so long that we think what we are feeling is normal. About a month or 2 after I went off, I had a general sense of my wellbeing being better. And I thought, “this is what normal feels like.” Again, I am probably not describing this correctly.
Vitamins Become Depleted
When you go off birth control, a lot of vitamins become depleted in your body. Vitamin D drops by 20% in your body, so make sure you are taking a supplement. Other vitamins that are depleted include all B vitamins, folate, zinc, magnesium, vitamin c and e. If you eat meat or don’t care, taking beef liver capsules is a great alternative since they include most of the vitamins and minerals that you need.
Since going off, I have had my share of hormonal acne along my chin. Normally it’s just one at a time, but there have been times where I’ve had at least 3. I haven’t had that many spots on my face since before I went on Accutane. My hormones are finally starting to regulate (I think), since my skin is starting to clear up slightly.
Everyone is different and it also depends on how long you’ve been on birth control. I’ve definitely learned a lot since going off. And even when I no longer have candida, I don’t plan on going back on it.