Effects Of Quitting Birth Control

by Isadora Baum, CHC

Whatever your reason, you might decide to go off your birth control one day. There's nothing wrong with that, of course, but you might notice a few changes in yourself and your body. So, when you decide to stop taking your birth control, it's a good idea to be prepared and know exactly what's expected. That way, you can save the worries or negative feelings associated with the change, and know that your body simply needs the time to adjust (and it's perfectly normal).

As a certified health coach, I work with clients on better understanding their bodies, how they can change over time, and how to approach the situation without feeling resentful or anxious. Plus, when it has to do with your lady parts and hormones, those negative feelings can skyrocket. To stay sane and work through the transition smoothly, here are a few symptoms to expect once you toss your birth control pack in the trash. What's more, look to your friends, family, or significant other for support. During this time, it's normal to feel unlike yourself, so confiding in others can help you focus on the positive aspects of your life and know that you're not going through this alone (and if you suddenly freak out, they'll probably know what's up). Here, a few things to expect:

1. You Could Get Pregnant

Whether or not that's the intention here, ditching the pill could open the doors for pregnancy. According to Dr. Michelle Isley, an OB/GYN at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center over email with Bustle, if you don't use a condom and don't have another form of contraception (beyond the pill), you run a high risk of getting pregnant.

2. You Might Get Less Anxious

According to Marcelle Pick, OB/GYN nurse practitioner and co-founder of the Women to Women clinic in Maine over interview with Livestrong, estrogen can lead to heightened anxiety, so if you choose to reduce your estrogen levels by way of weening off birth control, you might start to generally feel more calm in the day.

3. Your Period Could Be Heavier

Turns out, your period might arrive with a vengeance, meaning it'll be heavier and might include some serious cramping, says Isley. "Most types of hormonal birth control have a beneficial effect on your period. Methods like pills, patches, and rings will help to keep your cycles regular, and most women using these types of methods report less cramping and shorter and less heavy periods," says Isley. So, when you're off them, the opposite effect can happen.

4. Your "Lost" Period Could Come Back

If you've been experiencing super light one-day periods or have lost it altogether (in a safe way) on the pill, be warned, it'll reappear once you stop taking birth control. "Other types of birth control that are progesterone — only can cause some women to stop having periods all together, which is safe, but when you stop these types of methods, your periods will return to whatever is 'normal' for you," says Isley.

5. You Might Get Friskier

Apparently, the pill might be to blame for a lower libido, so if it's been taking you a while to get revved up with your partner, going off the pill could be just the thing to get that drive back. This symptom is surely something that most ladies can feel pretty damn great about.

6. You'll Get Wet Easier

A huge downside to the pill? It can dry you up. To avoid feeling like a desert down there, or needing tons of lube or foreplay (which is totally normal!), simply going off the pill could help naturally stimulate arousal.

If you're thinking about going off the pill, know that it's totally normal to do so. By listening to your body and acknowledging these changes (both good and bad), you'll be able to make the best of the situation.