People tweet horror stories of hormonal birth control gone wrong
Analysis

People tweet horror stories of hormonal birth control gone wrong

birth control

When Culture of Life Africa founder Obianuju Ekeocha tweeted about dangerous birth control devices, like IUDs, on November 28, 2018, she asked her followers to share their stories of using natural fertility awareness methods. They not only responded to what she asked, but they also shared their birth control “gone wrong” stories.

Referring to birth control devices as “shackles & chains”, Ekeocha said she “can’t believe women are convinced to put these devices into their bodies.” The truth is that most women and their partners don’t know the true risks of these birth control methods, because no one tells them. In a lot of cases, they find out the hard way.

READ: BBC documentary exposes ‘debilitating’ mental effects of birth control

Birth control, whether it’s the pill or a device such as an IUD, is touted as safe, despite the risks of blood clots, infertility, and even death. Like most people do when given a prescription or a medical device, women taking birth control listen to what their doctor tells them, and often don’t bother to read through the paperwork filled with fine print about the side effects and risks associated with it. So if their doctors aren’t telling them the full story, they don’t know.

Women also seem to be kept out of the loop when it comes to understanding their own bodies and menstrual cycles. Natural Family Planning is an accurate way to know when to skip sex if you are trying to avoid pregnancy and what days during the month are your most fertile when trying to get pregnant. It is not the rhythm method, as so many doctors still believe. There are multiple methods, including the Marquette method, which allows women to use the ClearBlue Fertility Monitor to track their cycles. When used properly, NFP is as effective as birth control. In the case of the Marquette Method, it is 98 percent effective in preventing pregnancy. But just like with birth control, you can’t skip a day if you want it to work. Ekeocha’s followers shared their stories about NFP:

 

READ: Ten dangers all women should know about hormonal birth control

Does hormonal birth control equate to “shackles & chains” as Ekeocha states? Here are the facts: it comes with a 70 percent increased risk of depression, an increased risk of blood clots, heart attack, and stroke, a 20 percent increased risk of breast cancer (after 10 years of use that jumps to 38 percent), and an increased risk of cervical cancer. Some hormonal birth controls can decrease bone density, which can lead to osteoporosis. Others can cause benign liver tumors. In addition, hormonal birth control can lead to infertility and unintended abortion.

NFP carries none of those risks, and all of the benefits of understanding your body and your cycle. That’s empowerment.

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