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HairySherry
September 13th, 2012, 02:01 PM
So I am once again thinking about going off of the pill to start the FAM (Fertility Awareness Method) of birth control. Part of the reason that I keep saying I'm going to do this but never have is because I've been on the pill since I was 16 (so about 12 years) and I'm kind of terrified of what might happen once I stop taking it. I'm specifically worried about what might happen to my hair since I've heard many horror stories about people having a huge shed when they stop taking BC, and being thin haired, that is very scary to me.

I suspect that this is one of those things that affects everyone differently, but I was curious to see what other women's experiences have been. I'd appreciate your feedback, thanks!

P.S. Anyone interested in learning more about FAM should definitely check out Taking Charge of Your Fertility by Toni Weschler

Just to clarify: I think I made it seem as though I was deciding to stop taking the pill or not based solely on the effect it would have on my hair. That is not at all the case, it was just something I was curious about as I weigh the pros/cons of the decision. It's a concern, but not the main one at all. I appreciate the feedback so far! :)

shutterpillar
September 13th, 2012, 02:07 PM
On the contrary, I am actually scared to go ON birth control because I am scared it will make me shed. I just discovered I have endometriosis, and need to take birth control pills to try to prevent cysts from developing. I have never been on the pill in my life, and its quite terrifying to me.

I have done FAM though, and it worked out very very well for our family. :) So hopefully that gives you a little bit of reassurance, though I have no idea what dropping birth control will do to your hair. I imagine it is one of those things that really does vary from person to person since everyones bodies are so different

Good luck! Please let us know how it goes.

HairySherry
September 13th, 2012, 02:25 PM
If I were faced with that decision today I would feel the same way and be very hesitant about whether to go on the pill or not. I'm not crazy about the idea of all these hormones running rampant throughout my body. But when I was 16 those concerns never occurred to me. My husband and I keep going back and forth about whether this is the right decision for us... I just don't know. :(

Dovetail
September 13th, 2012, 02:46 PM
*shrugs* I have taken bc since I was about 17, and I've gone off at rnadom for a month or two and then gone back on, or missed pills and doubled up or accidentally taken two in one day and not one the next day, I'm awful to say the least. I've also tried Nuva ring and hated it (for other reasons~) and I was very sporadic with that too.

Anyhow, I haven't lost any hair going on, or off of the pill or switching brands/types. Then again it didn't give me pimples or make me fat either so I might just be lucky that way. I had to go on it to help my hormone swings since I'd get sick the to point of losing my lunch on the first two days on my period every month (which sucked in school) over all I'm more afraid to have a child then I am of losing a bit of hair.

HairySherry
September 13th, 2012, 03:10 PM
over all I'm more afraid to have a child then I am of losing a bit of hair.
That's one of my main concerns as well. :) It's the main reason I'd stay on it, if that's what I decide to do. In all honesty, I love being on BC - other than the hormones aspect, which is becoming a bigger and bigger deal to me. I can control when/how often I get my period, which is wonderful. We do want a child in the next couple of years, though, so I wanted to get my body back on a "normal" monthly schedule. Some people are able to get pregnant right away after going off the pill, but I'm sure that I'll be one of those people whose cycle is messed up, especially since I've been on it for so long. There's a slightly religious reason for my wanting to switch from BC to FAM as well, but that's not the overriding factor. I'm just scared of the physical effects of not being on the pill anymore. I might be lucky and not have any.

RedheadMistress
September 14th, 2012, 05:30 AM
- Idk what pills they give in the US but I've been on birth control pills a couple of years ago for half a year, stopped it for years, didn't notice a difference in my hair . Now I'm on the implant, haven't taken it out and don't know if it will make a difference . . but I think if I were you, I'd try it out . Being on BC made me feel less worried about getting pregnant and not having to worry about going through the hassle of an abortion . .

elea
September 14th, 2012, 05:52 AM
when i went on the pill, there was no difference to my hair
i was on it for... just short of 2 decades
i came off it, there was no difference to my hair

the only thing i am aware of hair loss with friends and family, aside of physical health problems is stress or depression.

open big bracket
one thing i would say is that, if you have been on the pill for a long time and then try for a little person, it will take more time and be harder to get that little person (my aunt is a renounded gynaecologist specialised in infertility)
the second is, unwanted/wished pregnancy; does come from a birth control accident or putting yourself at many risks when not in a solid relationship

on the pill / off the pill, i am sorry to say but hair was/is the least of my worry
on the pill because i did not (personaly, my friends are doing fantastic jobs) see right to risk raising a child without a solid partner
off the pill because, when married, we tried
close big bracket

hope you find many usefull answers

Kelikea
September 14th, 2012, 05:55 AM
I've been on several different ones since high school, went off about 8 years ago, and then back on and off for a while, then on again in Feb. No difference in hair. I do notice a difference in cup size and my skin is clearer. I'm not sure why the concern for the "hormones running rampant" since they are meant to mimic the hormones naturally in your body. I take mine to regulate my hormones, since my estrogen seems to drop and I get mood swings, headaches, late periods, etc. The problems are the side effects, mainly blood clots, that my dr. is worried about. If you are over 35 or smoke, then the risk goes up. That is why I am going off again in the next few months and will have to find some other way of regulating my hormones/mood.

Bagginslover
September 14th, 2012, 06:09 AM
That's one of my main concerns as well. :) It's the main reason I'd stay on it, if that's what I decide to do. In all honesty, I love being on BC - other than the hormones aspect, which is becoming a bigger and bigger deal to me. I can control when/how often I get my period, which is wonderful. We do want a child in the next couple of years, though, so I wanted to get my body back on a "normal" monthly schedule. Some people are able to get pregnant right away after going off the pill, but I'm sure that I'll be one of those people whose cycle is messed up, especially since I've been on it for so long. There's a slightly religious reason for my wanting to switch from BC to FAM as well, but that's not the overriding factor. I'm just scared of the physical effects of not being on the pill anymore. I might be lucky and not have any.
One of the side effects of coming off the pill is super fertility for a few months ;) So I wouldn't worry about that aspect at all. It is only recommended to wait til after one normal cycle to get pregnant so your dates can be more easily calculated, but that can easily be done with scans, and by taking your temperature daily if you wish to go that far.
I was on the pill solidly from the age of 14 (put on it for health reasons, I wasn't active that young!) til I was 27. I had no ill effects while taking it, nor when I came off it. I'd be back on it now if I hadn't developed a phobia of taking tablets.

Avital88
September 14th, 2012, 06:57 AM
well about the fertility, i was taking bc for over 5 years and got pregnant the month after i stopped it,so be carefull always.. but then, i come out of a family where my grandma got pregnant before her first period when she just gave birth to my mum.

Shiranshoku
September 14th, 2012, 07:27 AM
I stopped using BC about a year ago, after having used it for 6 years. (4 years pill, 2 years implant)

Didn't notice any difference in my hair! But I lost weight, my skin cleared up, I don't have any migraines anymore... Definitely an improvement.

My cycle has become very unpredictable though. It stresses me out sometimes, but I can imagine if you don't want a wee one it would be even more annoying.

DISCLAIMER: My SO and I can't naturally conceive.

FAM can work beautifully, but the only 100 % fool proof way to not get pregnant is... Not having intercourse :).

RedBlue
September 14th, 2012, 07:27 AM
I've never noticed any changes of my hair being on the pill or going off... I have been taking the pill since 9th grade (to reg. my period and help with acne). I am currently not on the pill, but I should be, since I think I may have endometriosis (sp?) and have had two ovarian cysts in the past...

HairySherry
September 14th, 2012, 07:40 AM
when i went on the pill, there was no difference to my hair
i was on it for... just short of 2 decades
i came off it, there was no difference to my hair

...unwanted/wished pregnancy; does come from a birth control accident or putting yourself at many risks when not in a solid relationship

on the pill / off the pill, i am sorry to say but hair was/is the least of my worry

Thank you for your response. While I would prefer to wait another year or two before having a baby, it wouldn't be the end of the world if I got pregnant. I've been married for several years so I'm definitely in a solid relationship. I don't think I worded my original post very well, I've actually edited it so that people don't think I'm some nutter more concerned with her hair than her fertility. ;)


I've been on several different ones since high school, went off about 8 years ago, and then back on and off for a while, then on again in Feb. No difference in hair. I do notice a difference in cup size and my skin is clearer. I'm not sure why the concern for the "hormones running rampant" since they are meant to mimic the hormones naturally in your body. I take mine to regulate my hormones, since my estrogen seems to drop and I get mood swings, headaches, late periods, etc. The problems are the side effects, mainly blood clots, that my dr. is worried about. If you are over 35 or smoke, then the risk goes up. That is why I am going off again in the next few months and will have to find some other way of regulating my hormones/mood.
I've been trying to move away from any type of medication/pills. I don't even like taking aspirin so I wanted to do something more natural.


One of the side effects of coming off the pill is super fertility for a few months ;) So I wouldn't worry about that aspect at all. It is only recommended to wait til after one normal cycle to get pregnant so your dates can be more easily calculated, but that can easily be done with scans, and by taking your temperature daily if you wish to go that far.
I was on the pill solidly from the age of 14 (put on it for health reasons, I wasn't active that young!) til I was 27. I had no ill effects while taking it, nor when I came off it. I'd be back on it now if I hadn't developed a phobia of taking tablets.
Thank you for your response, Bagginslover! I will be sure to be careful if I stop taking BC! :)


well about the fertility, i was taking bc for over 5 years and got pregnant the month after i stopped it,so be carefull always.. but then, i come out of a family where my grandma got pregnant before her first period when she just gave birth to my mum.
I will definitely be sure to be careful! :) Thank you!

HairySherry
September 14th, 2012, 07:46 AM
I stopped using BC about a year ago, after having used it for 6 years. (4 years pill, 2 years implant)

Didn't notice any difference in my hair! But I lost weight, my skin cleared up, I don't have any migraines anymore... Definitely an improvement.

My cycle has become very unpredictable though. It stresses me out sometimes, but I can imagine if you don't want a wee one it would be even more annoying.

DISCLAIMER: My SO and I can't naturally conceive.

FAM can work beautifully, but the only 100 % fool proof way to not get pregnant is... Not having intercourse :).
Thank you so much... I get migraines as well, I never even thought they could be coming from the BC. Yet another reason to be serious about switching to FAM. It's not necessarily that I don't want a baby right now, I'd prefer to wait until we're able to move closer to my family which has been our plan. But if we got pregnant sooner than that, we'd be delighted. P.S. I'm very sorry to hear you and your SO can't concieve naturally. :(


I've never noticed any changes of my hair being on the pill or going off... I have been taking the pill since 9th grade (to reg. my period and help with acne). I am currently not on the pill, but I should be, since I think I may have endometriosis (sp?) and have had two ovarian cysts in the past...
Thank you, RedBlue. I'm sorry to hear about your medical issues, that's got to suck. Good luck with getting your health back on track!

ahrph
September 14th, 2012, 08:13 AM
I've taken BCP's for various periods (a few years here or there) of my life, but never noticed a difference in my hair.

Shiranshoku
September 22nd, 2012, 06:58 PM
Thank you so much... I get migraines as well, I never even thought they could be coming from the BC. Yet another reason to be serious about switching to FAM. It's not necessarily that I don't want a baby right now, I'd prefer to wait until we're able to move closer to my family which has been our plan. But if we got pregnant sooner than that, we'd be delighted. P.S. I'm very sorry to hear you and your SO can't concieve naturally. :(


Thank you, you're welcome. And that's very kind of you to say.

whiteorchid
September 22nd, 2012, 08:19 PM
I went off the pill for the same reasons when I was about 25, and I'd been on the pill since I was 16. My husband and I didn't have a child until we actively tried (and then I got pregnant the first month we tried to conceive, but I'd been off the pill for about two years at that point). Like you, though, we were both okay with the idea that I might accidentally get pregnant. I've been off the pill now for about ten years and will never go back on. I don't remember any hair shedding when I went off the pill.

Silverbrumby
September 22nd, 2012, 09:27 PM
Over the years birth control pills didn't make a difference to my hair one way or the other. Pregnancy did. Post partum shed did but that resolved. I thing that effected it the most was becoming hypothyroid and then hormonal shifts with age.

The pill apparently helps protect against some cancers and especially the deadly and hard to detect ovarian cancer. That's not a common cancer though.

Be careful when going off the pill with pregnancy unless it's ok if that occurs.

Oubli
September 23rd, 2012, 02:11 AM
Starting HBC, changing it or coming off of it can cause hair changes - it can caus4e major shedding.

For the year that I was on Depo, my hair fell out at an alarming rate. It was awful, it was also dry and dull. All because of an over dose of hormones.

Many women on IUD Divas, report major shedding when they stop BC and switch to a hormone less copper IUD.

I would also suggest Chaste Tree aka Vitex to help rebalance your hormones and HPA (Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal Axis), it helped me so much after the Depo and it seem to HALT the shedding as I was coming off of it. Within two weeks of taking it my shedding slowed considerable and remained at a low constant even after I stopped taking the Vitex, since it had rebalanced my hormones.

Also you may want to take a multivitamin, ALL women who take HBC should be taking a multivit since HBC prevents/alters the absorption and/or utilization of many key vitamins and minerals. This can definitely effect your hair, so take care to make sure you aren't malnourished/deficient in some way.

Good luck.

Tota
September 23rd, 2012, 02:37 AM
I was taking BC pills for 8 years, from 17 to 25. When I stopped I didn't notice any shedding (but my hair was just CL then) but after a few months I noticed a massive amount of new growth which was wavy (my hair was straight before that). Now, after 3 years, all my hair is wavy and much thicker and stronger that it was when I was on the pill. I also got hairy legs which I wasn't so happy about. I had to start shaving my legs at 25 because while on the pill my legs were hairless!

I talked to my doctor about this and all she said was: Yeah, it happens. It's just hormones.

Well I'm never taking BC pills again. Ever!:D

HairySherry
September 26th, 2012, 11:11 AM
Thank you for all of the responses. Sorry I haven't checked the thread in a few days, it had kind of died so I hadn't been checking on it. I still haven't decided what I want to do just yet, but I appreciate all of your input!