I just came across this article, and I am just in the beginning of my research to decide whether or not to discontinue the pill. I have never heard of anything like this before, but having had a saliva hormone test (which led to my being prescribed natural progesterone treatment), I would have to say my symptoms coincide with pre-menopausal symptoms.
Could someone who has done a bit more research than myself offer any opinions on this article, or point me to other things I might want to read? I stopped taking the pill about two weeks ago, and I really think I am done for good. I think I am going to find a good naturopath and work on balancing my hormones naturally with food and possibly natural progesterone therapy. I know there is a lot of talk about birth control on this site, but has anyone else experienced pre-menopausal symptoms? Anyone get their hormones and bodies back in good working order? Thanks for your help, ladies!
I know this post is old, and I'm not sure whether or not the user is still active, but I did a search for "birth control" and ran across this post. This article was intriguing to me having just come off the pill for several of these reasons. I found the following paragraph particularly interesting due to having experienced MANY of these side-effects, myself:
"Information emerging about the female brain reveals that estrogen is an essential hormone for healthy brain functioning. It enhances the connections between neurons, resulting in improved memory and prevention of dementia. Mood, smell, self-esteem, and even the ability of a woman to choose a healthy partner to father her child depend on estrogen. It stimulates the production of serotonin, which is one of the “feel-good” hormones in the brain. When estrogen is low, serotonin levels become low, resulting in depression, OCD, paranoia and ADD. This is why so many women, who have low estrogen due to the birth control pill, end up on antidepressants and other medications. Surprise! These problems happen to the menopausal brain as well, due to loss of estrogen."
Highlighting mood, OCD, and ADD-- while these are things that I have to keep an eye out for as is (anxiety disorders run in both sides of my family) I found that these conditions were particularly increasing as my 2 year birth control endeavor went on. The OCD especially had taken a huge toll on my life, and it seemed to appear almost out of thin air maybe about a year and a half ago. It caused me a great deal of stress and I was frequenting my therapist, grasping at straws, trying to find a solution that didn't involve anxiety medications.
At any rate, over the past few months I started reading more about the Pill, and the ex-users who swore that they found themselves again after stopping the Pill. I read such comments that some women even re-connected with their creative energy again. This hit home for me, because I used to write in my journal religiously... in fact, I even freelanced for a few sites. I was always painting, drawing, etc. And I had noticed over the past two years that it was just becoming impossible for me to do. I simply did not have the "flow"-- or even more so, the mental functioning to put together intelligent sentences of any sort. It was odd because in the past, no matter what I was going through in life, journal-writing always came easily and was therapeutic for me, and I could no longer rely on this when I was troubled.
Besides that I read a lot about women who complained of constantly being bloated on the pill, and losing that water retention almost immediately after coming off of the pill.
That being said...
I went off the pill recently. I was due to start a new pack last Sunday, so I've been pill free almost two weeks (including the normal week-off when I menstruated) and I have to say I'm already noticing drastic chances. Obviously, I'm already able to write again... which makes me really happy! I was gushing to my boyfriend last night about how wonderful I felt, because there's no more mental "haze". I feel more like myself again.
It's also nice knowing that I'm not putting any kind of crap in my body anymore. When I began my journey to raw, I gave up coffee, chewing gum, pain relievers (though I had already pretty much done that in the past), hydrogenated oils, HFCS, etc. And I knew that taking that tiny little pill everyday...no matter how small it was, was having a huge affect on me, and it was hindering me from feeling the full benefits of raw (or my otherwise over-all healthier lifestyle).
Anyway... Thanks for posting this (if you're still around)-- I'd be interested to hear if anyone shared a similar experience to mine, and for those who have been on the pill and went off of it... what was your experience, and how long did it take for you to feel the benefits? what were the benefits for you, personally?
I forgot to note that yes, the bloating almost immediately stopped. My boyfriend pointed out to me just last night that it's the least bloated he's ever seen me...and I ate like a friggen cow all week! Bloating was HUGE problem for me over the past couple years, and it never had been a problem in my past. I started thinking that at 23 I was starting to already "age" and gain belly fat... sheesh. I complained of it almost everyday, so I'm sure my boyfriend is just relieved to see me not self-loathing anymore :)