Reducing the side effects of birth control pills (health in the gallery!) Led to the reduction in the amount of synthetic hormones, estrogen and progestin, contained in them and the development of the ‘new generation’, low dose birth control pills . “Low dose” won’t mean much to you if you don’t know what this term refers to, so the basic information below may be helpful.
So how low can I go with the dose of hormonal ingredients to remain effective in preventing pregnancy?
Good question, since not all birth control pills contain the exact same amount of estrogen and progestin. I thought a useful reference for you would be a list of low dose and ultra low dose pills so that you can at least discuss the pros and cons with your doctor and see if you are a good candidate to go from, say, a low dose of 0.035 . mg of estrogen pill down to an ultra-low dose of 0.020 mg of estrogen pill. You may experience fewer or fewer side effects. Generic brands of low-dose birth control pills are also available.
Birth control pills with the least amount of estrogeni.e. 0.02 mg of estrogen (usually ethinyl estradiol) is classified as ‘ultra-low dose’ contraceptive pills. 0.020 mg of estrogen is sufficient for contraception, but spotting and breakthrough bleeding side effects are more common with these types of ultra-low-dose birth control pills than with low-dose pills that contain 0.030 mg or 0.035 mg of estrogen.
Here are some brands of “ultra-low-dose” birth control pills on the market. , you can find a generic version online now that you know how much estrogen to look for. The estrogen component is listed first and the progestin component second.
- Alesse (Aviane, Lessina, Lutera, Sronyx) contains 0.02 mg of ethinyl estradiol and 0.1 mg of levonorgestrel.
- Mircette contains 0.02 mg of ethinyl estradiol and 0.15 mg of desogestrel.
Pills containing 0.02mg – 0.035mg of estrogen are classified as “low dose” pills. Here are some brands of “low-dose” birth control pills:
- LoOvral contains 0.03 mg of ethinyl estradiol and 0.3 mg of nogestrel
- Nordette contains 0.03 mg of ethinylestradiol and 0.15 mg of levognorgestrel.
- Ortho-Cept (Reclipsen, Solia) contains 0.03 mg of ethinylestradiol and 0.15 mg of desogestrel.
- Desogen contains 0.03 mg of ethinyl estradiol and 0.15 mg of desogestrel.
- Levlen21 contains 0.03 mg of ethinyl estradiol and 0.15 mg of levonorgestrel.
- Seasonale / Seasonique contain 0.03 mg of ethinylestradiol and 0.15 mg of levonorgestrel
If you’re a fan of triphasic pills, here are some low-dose ones: Cyclessa
Phase 1: ethinylestradiol 0.025 mg and desogestrel 0.1 mg
Phase 2: ethinylestradiol 0.025 mg and desogestrel 0.125 mg
Phase 3: ethinylestradiol 0.025 mg and desogestrel 0.15 mg
In a study of 5,654 women, over six menstrual cycles, some used the popular Ortho-Novum 7/7/7 triphasic and others used Cyclessa. The women using Cyclessa were found to have significantly less bleeding or spotting and experienced an average weight loss of 4 pounds. versus an average weight gain of 2 pounds. with those who took Ortho-Novum 7/7/7.
Ortho Tricyclen Lo: 3 kinds of pill in the pack
- each white tablet contains 0.025 mg of ethinylestradiol and 0.180 mg of norgestimate
- each light blue tablet contains 0.025 mg of ethinylestradiol and 0.215 mg of norgestimate
- each dark blue tablet contains 0.025 mg of ethinylestradiol and 0.250 mg of norgestimate
(Ortho Tricyclen and Ortho-Cyclen, each containing 0.035 mg of ethinyl estradiol, contain slightly higher amounts of estrogen in each type of pill than Ortho Tricyclen Lo)
YASMIN and YAZ they are two more low dose birth control pills containing 0.03mg and 0.02mg respectively
estrogen but have a different type of progestin from the other pills called drospirenone (3.0 mg). On the negative side, since Yasmin / Yaz can increase potassium levels, it is not recommended for women with liver, adrenal, or kidney problems, but on the positive side, Yasmin / Yaz appears to reduce water retention and therefore , swelling and in some women gives a feeling of well-being. These pills also have a following among acne sufferers as they seem to improve this skin condition in many cases.As with many other types of birth control pills, Yasmin may not be suitable for you if you also take other over-the-counter medications free. pain relievers, potassium sparing diuretics, potassium supplements, or specific medications, so you MUST verify this with a doctor first.
You may have heard of the ‘mini’ pill (progestin-only pill or POP) that is generally prescribed for women who are breastfeeding or have estrogen intolerance. A “minipill” can be started immediately after delivery or abortion. There is no 7 day break or fake pills like there is with the combination pill and it must be taken at the same time every day. Micronor contains 0.35 mg of norethindrone and NO estrogen at all. In other countries, some brands include: Microlut 28, Microval 28, Locilan 28 and Noriday.
Pills that contain high amounts of estrogen. or progestin are used for emergency contraception and are known as ‘the morning after pill’ or Plan B. A common pill is Preven: each blue film-coated pill contains 0.25 mg of levonorgestrel and 0.05 mg (which are MILLIGRAMS, not micrograms) of estrogen, you usually take 2 doses, 12 hours apart. Plan B is a morning-after pill that contains only one hormone, progestin tablets (levonorgestrel), 0.75 mg.