Birth Control Pills Singapore
- 1 Birth Control Pills Singapore
- 1.1 How Do Birth Control Pills work?
- 1.2 How Effective Is the Birth Control Pill?
- 1.3 Who Is Suitable To Take Birth Control Pills?
- 1.4 Who Is Not Suitable To Take Birth Control Pills?
- 1.5 What Are The Side Effects of Birth Control Pills?
- 1.6 What Are The Other Benefits of Birth Control Pills?
- 1.7 How Do I Start Taking Birth Control Pills?
- 1.8 How Do I Take Birth Control Pills?
Birth control pills are one of the most popular and frequently used methods of birth control in Singapore.
They involve taking a hormonal pill regularly on a daily basis to prevent a pregnancy. The most commonly used type of birth control pills in Singapore is the combined oral contraceptive pill.
The combined oral contraceptive pill consists of a combination of 2 hormones, namely Estrogen and Progesterone.
There are various different brands of birth control pills on the market, and each brand differs in the hormonal content and level of estrogen and progesterone.
The correct type and quantity of hormones that is suitable for you should be discussed during your consultation with an experienced doctor.
The final decision on the best and most suitable brand of birth control pill for you will be a joint decision between you and your doctor, after the consultation.
How Do Birth Control Pills work?
The birth control pill works to prevent pregnancy in a number of ways.
Birth control pills contain a combination of hormones which sends signals to our brain to prevent or inhibit ovulation from happening each month.
When a woman consumes her regular birth control pill on a daily basis, these signals are consistently and constantly being sent to our brain which prevents ovulation from happening. As such, without ovulation, fertilisation and pregnancy cannot occur.
Additionally, the hormones in the birth control pills also lead to thickening of the cervical mucus in the woman’s vagina, which creates an unfavourable environment for the sperm to pass through.
Lastly, taking birth control pills daily leads to regular and consistent levels of hormones in a woman’s body. As the hormonal levels in the body are controlled by the birth control pills and ovulation is prevented, the womb will also start to thin out its lining, which creates an unfavourable environment for implantation of a fertilized egg.
This again, helps to prevent a pregnancy from taking place.
How Effective Is the Birth Control Pill?
The birth control pill is an extremely effective and easy way for women to prevent an unwanted pregnancy.
For it to work well, birth control pills need to be taken at the same time every day so that the brain consistently receives these signals to prevent ovulation from happening.
With regular and consistent use, the birth control pill can be up to 98% effective in preventing an unwanted pregnancy.
Who Is Suitable To Take Birth Control Pills?
Birth control pills are suitable for any woman who is sexually active and looking for a short term, reversible form of contraception.
Birth control pills are extremely easy to use, effective and can be stopped any time a woman desires fertility and wants to start a family.
Birth control pills are a popular choice of contraceptive especially for:
Sexually active younger women
First time users of birth control
Women who desire short term reversible contraception
Women who only want birth control for a short period of time
Women who prefer non invasive methods of birth control
Women who want a discreet form of contraception
Additionally, on top of birth control and pregnancy prevention, it is also particularly helpful in treating women with the following conditions:
Who Is Not Suitable To Take Birth Control Pills?
While birth control pills are a great, easy and effective way to prevent pregnancy, it may not be suitable for everyone.
The daily consumption of hormones may not be suitable for women with some underlying pre-existing medical conditions or who are on certain long term medications.
Long term, regular consumption of birth control pills are generally very safe, especially in younger women with no medical history.
However, the consumption of regular hormones in somebody with certain underlying medical conditions could potentially lead to unwanted complications such as blood clots or stroke.
Hence, it is very important to ensure you consult with an experienced women’s health doctor before starting on birth control pills
Some conditions which would make birth control pills unsuitable for you are:
What Are The Side Effects of Birth Control Pills?
Birth control pills are generally well tolerated and safe, when prescribed correctly by an experienced doctor.
Just like any other medication, some people may experience some mild side effects which are usually temporary. Side effects usually occur when a woman first starts her birth control pills for the first time,as the body may need some time to adjust to the hormones.
The good news is that most of these side effects usually go away after 3 months as your body adjusts and adapts to the hormones in the birth control pills.
Common side effects include:
There is no need to be alarmed if you experience any of these side effects as they are only temporary and will go away on their own once your body adjusts to the hormones after a few weeks.
What Are The Other Benefits of Birth Control Pills?
Being on regular birth control pills does not only help a woman prevent pregnancy, but also plays an important role in treating other concurrent female related issues that may be affecting them.
Birth control pills contain a fixed amount of hormones in each pill, and when taken daily on a regular basis, it helps to regulate and control the hormone levels in the woman.
This makes it an extremely useful and excellent treatment method for conditions like:
How Do I Start Taking Birth Control Pills?
- You first start with a consultation with an experienced women’s health doctor to find out if you are suitable for birth control pills.
- The next discussion will be to decide which brand of birth control pills is the most suitable and best for you. This is a personalised decision made between your doctor and yourself after a detailed understanding of your medical condition.
- If found to be suitable, you will then be prescribed with a month’s supply of birth control pills first to try out, especially if you are a first time user.
- The best time to start your pack of birth control pills is on day 1 of your natural menstrual cycle.
However, if a woman decides to start birth control pills any other time of her cycle, it is important to first consult your doctor to ensure certain precautions are in place and that it is safe for you to do so.
How Do I Take Birth Control Pills?
You will be required to take 1 pill a day, at preferably the same time every day.
This helps to maximise the efficacy and protection of the pill against any unwanted pregnancy.
In Singapore, birth control pills come in either a 21 day pack or a 28 day pill pack.
The key difference between a 21 day pill pack and a 28 day pill pack is the presence of placebo pills, also known as sugar tablets.
Taking the 21 day pack will require you to take a 7 day break after each pack, while taking the 28 day pack does not require a break.
It is best to consult your doctor to find out which type of regimen is best for you.
Frequently Asked Questions
If consumed properly and on time, birth control pills are an extremely effective way of preventing pregnancy with an efficacy of up to 99%.
While there is no birth control method that gives a 100% guarantee, the chance of a pregnancy is extremely rare.
However, if a woman forgets her pills frequently or does not take them on time, or messes up the pill cycle, then there is a risk of pregnancy even while on birth control pills.
Another point to note is that birth control pills require at least 7 days of regular consumption before its effects kick in. Hence, it is important to use alternative contraception such as a condom, or to abstain from unprotected sexual intercourse for the first 7 days of starting the pill.
It depends on which pill in your pack you forget and how soon you remember your missed pill.
If you have been taking your birth control pills regularly for at least the past 1 week and happen to forget a pill less than 24 hours from the time you are supposed to take it, then you may just take the missed dose as soon as possible. Even if this requires you to consume 2 pills in a day.
However, if you have forgotten to take more than 1 pill in the pack, or it has been more than 24 hours since you took your pill, then you may have lost some protection.
You will need to abstain for the next 7 days and may even need to consider emergency contraception if you have had unprotected intercourse.
For more accurate advice based on your personal situation, it is best to consult a doctor who is experienced with the use of birth control pills.
Rest assured that birth control pills are 100% reversible and have no impact on your future fertility at all.
In fact, their effects can be reversed extremely quickly, and the pills can be stopped anytime you wish to start a family.
Yes, you will. Once you are on birth control pills, your menstrual cycle will be regulated and controlled by the pills. Hence, it is expected that your menstrual cycle will differ from your usual natural cycle.
You can expect to get a monthly period, also known as a withdrawal bleed, in the 7 days that you take a break.
You may notice that your menstrual periods when on birth control pills are lighter in flow, and also less painful.
Dr Michelle Chia
After graduating from the National University of Singapore, Dr Michelle's journey allowed her to train in Women's Health and Aesthetic Medicine. Her experience has led her to be featured on multiple media platforms including Radio Stations and prominent Magazines like Her World, Women's Weekly and CLEO. Her work has also received recognition both locally and internationally in several Medical Conferences.
Ezra Clinic is a Women’s Health, Wellness and Aesthetic Clinic that is conveniently located at the top floor of Royal Square Medical Suites in Novena, Singapore’s Medical Health Hub.
Helmed by Dr Michelle Chia, Ezra Clinic is your chosen one stop clinic for all your Women’s Health and Wellness needs.