For the past three years, I have not taken any birth control pills and instead solely relied on condoms for contraception. These past few years, I have been a full-time freelancer without health insurance and I have prioritized paying for my anti-depressant prescription — anywhere from $100 to $120 bucks a month, depending on the pharmacy — over BC.
But if the Obama administration gets its way after a thorough review from health experts, the costs of contraceptives and other family planning services will be covered by insurers under health care reform. Contraceptives would be considered “preventative services” because they prevent unwanted pregnancies and a host of other health issues that come along with the stork’s surprises. Wouldn’t that be the jam?
Don’t get too excited yet, though: some “family” organizations are already whining that pregnancy is “not a disease” and birth control should not be considered a preventative service. Keep reading »
Back in 1968, British researchers began following 46,000 women. They compared women who took birth control pills to those who didn’t and found that those who began taking birth control in the late ’60s lived longer than those who never took it. The researchers also found that the pill decreased the women’s chances of “dying from bowel cancer by 38 percent and from other diseases by 12 percent.” The experts know very little regarding how the pill prolongs life because the study only compared birth control pill takers to those who never took it, and other factors, such as a woman’s general health, could also play a role. They suspect the synthetic hormones that suppress ovulation may also prevent other diseases, including ovarian and endometrial cancer. Sadly, though, the pill still increases the risk of breast and cervical cancer for women who take it today. [AP] Keep reading »
Blogger Amanda Hess of The Sexist took her video camera around D.C. and asked a bunch of dudes to explain how different types of women-controlled birth control work, including the Pill, the patch, diaphragms, and Nuva-ring. Some guys get an A+ for looking adorable while trying … while others don’t know what the eff they’re talking about. (Like the guy who says the birth control pill is the same thing as emergency contraception. No sex for you until you straighten that one out, bucko!) And an A++ for the guy wearing flannel and glasses who uses the phrase “sexual congress” with a straight face. Whoever he’s schtupping is a lucky woman.
Hey, dudes who read The Frisky, can you do any better? (And no looking up the answers on other web sites and cheating.) [The Sexist] Keep reading »
We’ve all heard about emergency contraception — also called “the morning after pill” — which is most effective when a woman takes it up to 72 hours (five) after unprotected sex to prevent an unwanted pregnancy. Chances are, you or someone you know has taken EC after the condom broke, a sexual assault, or some other emergency. Recently, medical experts have been talking about Ellaone, a morning after pill available in the UK, which also very effective up to five days after unprotected sex. In one study, Ellaone prevented two-thirds of pregnancies within three days of unprotected sex and 50 percent of pregnancies within five days.
Ellaone currently isn’t available in the United States, but it could be eventually. Problem is, though, anti-abortion activists both here and in the UK are railing against Ellaone, calling it an “abortion pill.” Keep reading »
Nothing has made us giggle as hard this morning as this “Colbert Report” clip about 17-year-old Freesia Jackson, who was nailed by her school officials for possession of a controlled substance: her birth control pills. Popping a baby-blocker in the cafeteria earned this little trollop a two-week suspension from school.
Keep reading »
I don’t get lady times once a month. In fact, I don’t get it ever. Due to babymaker problems that you’d prefer not to think about (trust me), I’ve been on a constant stream of birth control for six months so as to avoid more surgery. In short, my reproductive system doesn’t function. The factory has been shut down.
But because a few icky lady parts problems and surgeries just aren’t enough to deal with, I’ve also reacted badly to six different forms of hormones, becoming a bloated, mean, or moody mess after a few weeks on each. So last week, once the inexplicable crying had set in, my chest had inflated to monstrous proportions, and I felt the urge to kick small children, my doctor decided it was time to try my seventh variety of hormone. But rather than switching directly from the patch to the new pill, she told me to take a week off, complete a cycle and then get back to being The Amazing Period-Less Girl. Keep reading »
With all the advances in technology and medical research, it’s about damned time someone discovered a way to minimize or eliminate that inconvenient monthly scourge we ladies call our period. Or so drugs like Seasonale and Lybrel, which advertise their ability to reduce or annihilate a monthly period (respectively) would have you believe. As anyone who watches E! or SoapNet (what? You don’t watch “Being Erica”?) can attest, there’s been an explosion in the marketing of birth control pills that help you manage your flow, but the technology allowing a woman to do this has been around since the advent of the Pill in 1960. In fact, the Pill’s creators allowed specifically for a week-long sabbatical from the hormones that stopped you from ovulating with the specific intention of mimicking the body’s natural cycle, worried that women would balk at the notion of not having her trusty monthly visitor. But the fact is, if you’re on the Pill, there’s no reason to bleed. And yet some women still find the idea of not having a period exceedingly unnatural. So the question is: when you’re on the Pill, is your period really necessary? Two women weigh in, after the jump… Keep reading »
It’s going to be raining birth control pills on college campuses now that the “Affordable Birth Control Act” has passed, which, as part of omnibus spending bill, will give college health clinics and community health centers affordable access to birth control pills. In 2007, due to federal cost-cutting, students were forced to pay up to 10 times more for the pill than they had before. Some went from paying $5 or less per month to paying $30 to $50. Some college pharmacies stopped stopped stocking birth control pills altogether. Now uninsured students won’t have to view the pill as an extravagant luxury and can enjoy the tons of sex they’re having without risking an unintended pregnancy. [USNews.com] Keep reading »