You may have heard cases from your friends where they swear they were on birth control but got pregnant anyway. When this happens, it is usually not the pill at fault. Certain things can make the pill ineffective and make you pregnant even if you do not want to be. Your lifestyle choices, daily habits, and your medications could be the culprit.
If you rely entirely on birth control to prevent pregnancy and do not use additional contraceptive methods, knowing which things can lower the pill’s effectiveness is extremely important. If you are just getting started with birth control or have questions, refer to Boca Raton birth control health specialists.
Things that make birth control less effective
- Human error.
Human error is the biggest reason for the ineffectiveness or failure of birth control. Birth control pills must be taken daily for the best results and maximum protection. Taking birth control every day keeps your hormones at a consistent level and avoids pregnancy. Missing even a day throws off your hormonal levels and increases your chances of getting pregnant.
- Taking other medications.
Certain medications can decrease the effects of birth control and interfere with its reliable contraceptive properties. Some prescription medicines that may make birth control ineffective include:
- seizure medications
- antiretroviral therapies for HIV
Not all antibiotics cause problems with contraception, but watch out for rifampin, a medication that can reduce estrogen in the blood. Before starting birth control, always consult your doctor about your medications.
- Not taking the pill at the same time every day.
It is not uncommon to forget to take your medication due to the hectic schedule of life. However, this is not a mistake you want to make with birth control. If you missed one, take one immediately. If you have not taken a pill the entire day, take two the next day. It is important to try your best to maintain your hormone levels to get consistent effects and results.
If you often forget to take pills, use your phone to set reminders. If you have missed more than two pills consecutively, consult your doctor immediately.
- Improper storage.
Birth control pills should be stored in a dry location at room temperature. The pills should never be refrigerated or kept in extreme temperature conditions. Changing the location of the bottle is also not recommended since temperature fluctuations can make the pill less effective and make you more vulnerable to getting pregnant.
Avoid keeping your birth control pills with your other medication in the medication cabinet or places where humidity levels frequently change.