How Long Does It Take To Lose Weight After Stopping Birth Control

Sexual Health

How Long Does It Take To Lose Weight After Stopping Birth Control

Editorial Team
2021
.
11
.
10

In this article, we'll be explaining the importance of birth control, how birth control pills work, reasons why you might stop taking birth control, whether it is possible for you to lose weight after going off birth control and how long that weight loss will take. 



STARTING FROM
$
/MONTH
What Is Birth Control And How Does It Work


Also known as contraception, birth control refers to any method that can be used to prevent unwanted pregnancies from happening. Birth control methods can include condoms, birth control pills, practicing the rhythm method, IUDs and tubal ligation. 


It is important you use birth control if you are sexually active with your partner. In a study done by the National University Hospital (NUH) in Singapore, researchers found that 84% of couples who did not use any birth control methods got pregnant within a year and 92% of those same couples got pregnant within 2 years. 


Besides pregnancy prevention, women can also use birth control for other purposes. Hormonal birth control can be taken to manage period cramps and symptoms of PMS, regulate periods and keep hormonal acne breakout under control. Hormonal birth control can also help reduce the risk of developing ovarian and uterine cancer.


Birth control pills are available in different forms, either as a combination pill (Yasmin, Yaz) or as a progestin-only pill (Cerelle, Cerazette). 


Combination birth control pills work by using both estrogen and progestin hormones to prevent ovulation. These birth control pills also help to thicken the mucus present in your cervix which makes it more difficult for the sperm to reach and fertilize the egg. 


As the name implies, progestin-only pills contain only progestin. Similar to combination birth control pills, progestin-only pills will prevent ovulation, thicken the mucus present in the cervix to make it difficult for the sperm to reach and fertilize the egg, and thins the uterine lining to prevent the fertilized egg from implanting itself. 


It is possible for both combination and progestin-only birth control pills to achieve a 99% effectiveness rate, but only if used perfectly. "Perfect use" refers to when the birth control pill is taken at the same time every day, without fail.


"Typical use" refers to when the user occasionally forgets to take their dose of birth control pills or forgets to start a new pack of birth control pills. This is how most women will take birth control pills and while it does increase the likelihood of the birth control failing and accidental pregnancy occurring, typical use still has a high effectiveness rate of 91%.


Similar to other methods of birth control, birth control pills can make periods lighter and reduce the severity of period cramps. 


Reasons To Stop Taking Birth Control Pills


Here are some reasons why one might consider stopping birth control: 


Thinking Of Having Kids


You might consider going off birth control if you are thinking of having kids. After stopping birth control, it is likely that fertility will return to normal fairly quickly. 


If you are thinking of getting pregnant, it will take an average of 5 months after stopping hormonal birth control before you are able to conceive. If you stop using non-hormonal birth control like condoms, it will take an average of 3 months to conceive.


You Experience Negative Side Effects Or Risk Developing Health Issues 


Besides thinking about having kids soon, you might want to stop taking birth control pills if you experience severe side effects like increased high blood pressure, mood swings or even symptoms of depression. 


It might even be recommended to you by your doctor that you go off your hormonal birth control if they think they might increase your likelihood of developing the following health issues like: 


- High blood pressure

- Liver cancer

- Stroke

- Blood clots 


What Happens If You Stop Taking Birth Control Pills?


Getting Pregnant


As mentioned earlier, going off birth control will increase your chances of getting pregnant. 


If you are thinking of getting pregnant, it will take an average of 5 months after stopping hormonal birth control before you are able to conceive. If you stop using non-hormonal birth control like condoms, it will take an average of 3 months to conceive. 


Your Hormones Begin Regulate Itself


While on hormonal birth control, your hormones will be suppressed by the pill. 


If you do choose to stop taking birth control, this suppression will stop and your hormones will start their cycle and begin to fluctuate.  


You Might Experience Heavier Periods With More Cramps


Birth control pills usually regulate your period making them more consistent, lighter and less painful. After about 30 days of birth control pills, your period will start up again and you might experience heavier, more painful periods or irregular periods. 


Acne Breakout Might Come Back


As birth control helps stabilize your hormones, once you go off birth control, your hormones will return to their normal state which might lead to the return of hormonal acne. 


During ovulation, your testosterone and estrogen levels are at its highest and acne breakouts are common side effects. 


A selective diet might be able to help regulate your hormones and calm your acne breakouts when you are off birth control pills. 


Increase In PMS Symptoms 


Birth control can help decrease your PMS symptoms (irritability, fatigue, breast tenderness, and headaches. So going off birth control could see an increase in these symptoms due to your fluctuating hormones. 


Increase Sex Drive 


Birth control can potentially suppress your sex drive, so there is a possibility that you might see an increase in your libido as your hormone level increases.


You Might Lose Weight 


While on birth control, you might gain some weight due to changes in your hormones, diet and water retention. As a result, you might experience some weight loss - mostly water weight -  after going off birth control. 


How Long Does It Take To Lose Weight After Stopping Birth Control 


If you lose weight after stopping birth control, it might take a few days or up to a week to see the difference on a scale. For most users, their hormonal levels will take a few days to regulate itself back to normal after stopping hormonal birth control.


As mentioned earlier, it's not a guarantee that you will lose weight after stopping hormonal birth control and if you do, this weight loss is likely water weight.