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Eskimo1990
10-31-2008, 06:20 AM
I think after I turn 18 I want to go on birth control.
I didn't use to have bad cramps, but with each period they seem to get worse.
Plus my cycle is always super long and I hate it.
So I know birth control will reduce both those things.

What is the best kind of birth control for me?

JoNightshade
10-31-2008, 06:25 AM
It's different for everyone, but I went on it initially for the same reason - I was having horrendous cramps and really irregular periods. I would talk to your gynecologist. A lot depends on what method you want to use (ie remember to take pills every day, patch, or whatever), and also on whether you plan to be sexually active. If you're not, the gyn would probably recommend a very "mild" birth control. And some brands work for some people but not others. Right now I am on yasmin and I am quite happy with it. Gyn told me last time they just came out with a lighter-hormone version for women under 180lbs, but I didn't go for it because it has a higher risk of pregnancy and I don't want no babies. :)

Anyway, like I said, go see the gyn. She'll have the best recommendations and ask you questions to see which is best for you.

Eskimo1990
10-31-2008, 06:30 AM
Thanks :)

Umm I don't have a gynecologist...

willfulone
10-31-2008, 06:35 AM
I would like to assist you - but the only real advice anyone here can give you is to see a doctor or go to planned parenthood and get real advice from a medical professional.

The information you provide is not nearly enough for one of us to suggest anything appropriate for you.

You could smoke (which may affect BC choice).
You could have a diagnosed (or undiagnosed) medical condition that prohibits certain things we could tell you and which you have not disclosed.
You could be in a category that makes you high risk for certain hormones that may harm you.

There are many factors and even if we suggested a type of pill or gave a name of one, your doctor is going to suggest what is best for you based on your medical history anyway.

Please, just see a doctor or go to planned parenthood where a full history can be taken and the proper medical advice given.

Christine

czjaba
10-31-2008, 06:36 AM
Yeah, see the gyn about it and then be prepared to switch and change methods until you find what works right for you. I tried the pills when I was about 17 or so for the same reason, but they made my cramps worse. It seems that all methods of birth control had adverse effects on my body. I tried the depo shot. Most of my friends swear by those that they have almost no period and no cramps. Well, didn't work for me. I had the complete opposite effects. Then about 10 years later, when I was ready for birth control again, (after my second child) I used the patch. I only used it for a year, but I still have a rash-like scar at the bottom of my back, top of my butt, from where it felt like it burned me, and that was 4 years ago. But I have many friends who have used all of these and loved them, my body just didn't agree. So, yeah, see the gyn and try what she recommends for your body type and situation.

willfulone
10-31-2008, 06:37 AM
Thanks :)

Umm I don't have a gynecologist...

It is not required you have a OB/GYN. You can get the same from your General Practitioner or your family doctor.

Planned Parenthood is always a great option too.

Please do not seek medical advice like this on a public forum. It is not only unwise, it can be dangerous.

Christine

Eskimo1990
10-31-2008, 06:37 AM
Thanks guys. I didn't realize birth control pills were that complicated....

I don't smoke btw...it's a nasty habit I think

JoNightshade
10-31-2008, 06:37 AM
Well, it's kinda hard to get birth control without one; you need a prescription. Anyway, if you'll be 18 soon you probably want to go in for a routine checkup anyway. See, they have this racket going where they only give you a prescription for a year, and then you have to come in for an annual probe before they'll give you any more. (I think it's ridiculous - birth control should be available over the counter - but that's life.)

Incidentally, it's just a good idea in general to get yourself checked out. I was super shy and I managed to get married without having a full exam. Unfortunately something WAS physically wrong and I spent half my honeymoon making an emergency trip home to see my gynecologist. NOT fun.

Entropy Perk
10-31-2008, 06:41 AM
At 18, you should have an OB/GYN. You need your yearly PAP smears and breast checks. If you do not have one because you have no medical insurance, then go to Planned Parenthood (even if you do have insurance, you can still go there and they will accept your policy). They will do your yearly and breast check and look at your iron levels ect.. Its pretty cheap, sliding scale, if you are without medical coverage. They can also give you birth control right there. You can take a pill (various sorts that they will explain to you) get the patch or the Depo shot (big fan of the shot here).

You really need to talk to a medical expert on what sort would be best for your lifestyle and health. Planned Parenthood has them available.

Eskimo1990
10-31-2008, 06:42 AM
Yeah, that's what my mom told me when I had all that trouble with my side.
Unfortunately for me no one explained to me that when a doctor asks you if you are sexually active he actually means are you a virgin.... *shudders* stupid doctor.

Eskimo1990
10-31-2008, 06:43 AM
At 18, you should have an OB/GYN. You need your yearly PAP smears and breast checks. If you do not have one because you have no medical insurance, then go to Planned Parenthood (even if you do have insurance, you can still go there and they will accept your policy). They will do your yearly and breast check and look at your iron levels ect.. Its pretty cheap, sliding scale, if you are without medical coverage. They can also give you birth control right there. You can take a pill (various sorts that they will explain to you) get the patch or the Depo shot (big fan of the shot here).

You really need to talk to a medical expert on what sort would be best for your lifestyle and health. Planned Parenthood has them available.

Not 18 yet. I still have 2 more months

Entropy Perk
10-31-2008, 06:55 AM
Doesn't matter on age really. You should go after you start your period, for checks. 18 is an age given, because you are then a legal adult and no one can stop you from going on your own. Under 18, a parent could stop you, but no doctor would refuse to see you if you went behind their backs, nor can they legally tell them you have been in to see them. Also, apparently most young women are sexually active in some manner, by 18 so need STD and pregnancy checks.

When they ask if you are sexually active, the reason they put it that way, is because you can still get pregnant or an STD without ever having had intercourse. Oral or anal sex is commonly done and the medical personal need to know if you are engaging in either practice, so that they can offer you safe, correct health advice.

Eskimo1990
10-31-2008, 06:57 AM
Yeah I know. But that's what this doctor meant

I always thought sexually active meant have you done ANYTHING sexual. Not just intercourse....

Entropy Perk
10-31-2008, 07:07 AM
Ahh, now I get you. Odd that he only meant that. I hate seeing male doctors though. Anything female, they only know from books. I'd rather to talk to someone with the same parts, iykwim.

Eskimo1990
10-31-2008, 07:09 AM
Ahh, now I get you. Odd that he only meant that. I hate seeing male doctors though. Anything female, they only know from books. I'd rather to talk to someone with the same parts, iykwim.

Yeah. Well that's not what I went for. But when he couldn't figure out was wrong so he turned to maybe I have an STD...which I don't...

But now I don't exactly like that doctor...

Yeshanu
10-31-2008, 07:19 AM
Eskimo, I went to my doctor a while back for the same reason, and she refused to put me on the pill. She told me to take extra calcium. So I'm taking Mega-Cal, in addition to drinking lots of milk, and it works!

You might want to try that first, because it's really helped me, and without all the drugs. No prescription required, either. :)

Eskimo1990
10-31-2008, 07:22 AM
Eskimo, I went to my doctor a while back for the same reason, and she refused to put me on the pill. She told me to take extra calcium. So I'm taking Mega-Cal, in addition to drinking lots of milk, and it works!

You might want to try that first, because it's really helped me, and without all the drugs. No prescription required, either. :)

Really?

I have a really hard time swallowing pills, so generally when I get cramps if I can I'll drink lots of milk and it tends to help.

The last time I had REALLY bad cramps, I thought I was lactose intolerant so I didn't do the milk thing

Yeshanu
10-31-2008, 07:26 AM
Really?

I have a really hard time swallowing pills, so generally when I get cramps if I can I'll drink lots of milk and it tends to help.

The last time I had REALLY bad cramps, I thought I was lactose intolerant so I didn't do the milk thing

Mega-Cal is soft chews, and they come in two flavours: Butterscotch and chocolate. It's like being forced to eat candy. :D

Eskimo1990
10-31-2008, 07:28 AM
Mega-Cal is soft chews, and they come in two flavours: Butterscotch and chocolate. It's like being forced to eat candy. :D

Yay!!! Candy!
Are they expensive?

Yeshanu
10-31-2008, 07:31 AM
I think the last package I bought was about twelve dollars Canadian. The main problem I can see you having is that they might be available only in Canada. :(

Anyhow, just read some of the stuff upthread about finding a doctor--if you don't have a regular doctor, does your school have a nurse or doctor you could see?

Eskimo1990
10-31-2008, 07:33 AM
I think the last package I bought was about twelve dollars Canadian. The main problem I can see you having is that they might be available only in Canada. :(

Anyhow, just read some of the stuff upthread about finding a doctor--if you don't have a regular doctor, does your school have a nurse or doctor you could see?

Man that would suck...maybe...if that's the case I could have them shipped from the internet? Though that would cost some.

HA...no...
My school is kind of sucky.

Yeshanu
10-31-2008, 07:43 AM
Man that would suck...maybe...if that's the case I could have them shipped from the internet? Though that would cost some.



If you type "mega cal soft chews" into Google, the third or fourth entry down is an online source for them.

But try your local grocery stores and pharmacies first. If they don't have them they may be able to get them.

Give it about a month of regularly taking them before you decide whether or not they work for you.

Eskimo1990
10-31-2008, 07:45 AM
Thanks! I'll do that now

jennifer75
10-31-2008, 07:56 AM
I think after I turn 18 I want to go on birth control.
I didn't use to have bad cramps, but with each period they seem to get worse.
Plus my cycle is always super long and I hate it.
So I know birth control will reduce both those things.

What is the best kind of birth control for me?

Sounds like someone's got a steady boyfriend...


snicker snicker neener neener.

Are you responsible enough for birth control? If you aren't going to be ON IT as in "on time" don't bother. Cause if it doesn't fail you it will make you sick when you have to double up. The pill has side effects, and it also has great benefits...one is little to no risk or pregnancy, but yes you'll have scheduled mild periods, and no ovulating and if you're like me, ovulating is worse than your period.

Talk to your doctor. See what works for you.

I've heard a lot of negatives about Depo....so do your homework.

jennifer75
10-31-2008, 08:06 AM
It's different for everyone, but I went on it initially for the same reason - I was having horrendous cramps and really irregular periods. I would talk to your gynecologist. A lot depends on what method you want to use (ie remember to take pills every day, patch, or whatever), and also on whether you plan to be sexually active. If you're not, the gyn would probably recommend a very "mild" birth control. And some brands work for some people but not others. Right now I am on yasmin and I am quite happy with it. Gyn told me last time they just came out with a lighter-hormone version for women under 180lbs, but I didn't go for it because it has a higher risk of pregnancy and I don't want no babies. :)

Anyway, like I said, go see the gyn. She'll have the best recommendations and ask you questions to see which is best for you.

The patch wasn't strong enough for me. I've also heard good things about Yasmin.

Keep in mind, birthcontrol pills will not protect you from STD's. One you should really be cautious of is HPV. If anything, go get THAT shot. Guys - boyfriends or not - see the pill as an easy out for being careful. Don't be stupid. Take care of yourself.

jennifer75
10-31-2008, 08:09 AM
It is not required you have a OB/GYN. You can get the same from your General Practitioner or your family doctor.

Planned Parenthood is always a great option too.



18 is a good age to start having regular yearly exams, too. So, if its at PP or your Gyno, keep in mind your a woman.....start taking care of your body.

Snowstorm
10-31-2008, 08:16 AM
Eskimo1990, the above posters gave great advice. Planned Parenthood can be a great help to you.

About your trouble swallowing pills, I used to have a problem with swallowing pills, even when taking it with a drink. An easy technique for swallowing pills, even the big ol' horse tablets, is just take a bite of something. Just keep a small amount in your mouth, pop in a pill and swallow. For my multivitamins, I eat a munchie bar. The reflex is like you don't have a pill in your mouth at all. I don't even feel the big ones go down.

Good for you for thinking about birth control. Good luck.

jennifer75
10-31-2008, 08:19 AM
See, they have this racket going where they only give you a prescription for a year, and then you have to come in for an annual probe before they'll give you any more. (I think it's ridiculous - birth control should be available over the counter - but that's life.)


Clinics provide free condoms for girls, girls who don't want to get paps in order to receive prescriptions for oral contraceptive.

Receiving a prescription requires an exam which is a great way to make a young woman realize that sex has consequences. You don't just get to undress and have a great time, sex has consequences. Getting an exam regularly can help uncover problems and prevent larger more serious problems.

If a girl is ready for sex, she's ready for the risk of pregnancy, and std's.

Wow, did that sound like a commercial or what?

jennifer75
10-31-2008, 08:22 AM
Yeah, that's what my mom told me when I had all that trouble with my side.
Unfortunately for me no one explained to me that when a doctor asks you if you are sexually active he actually means are you a virgin.... *shudders* stupid doctor.Thats not JUST what he means....he wants to know, yes, if you are a virgin, but mainly if you are exactly that, SEXUALLY ACTIVE. Should he worry about STD's.

jennifer75
10-31-2008, 08:24 AM
Really?

I have a really hard time swallowing pills, so generally when I get cramps if I can I'll drink lots of milk and it tends to help.

The last time I had REALLY bad cramps, I thought I was lactose intolerant so I didn't do the milk thing

I have a very hard time with the "I can't swallow pills"....

A friend of mine had an ABORTION because she wouldn't take birth control pills, because she said she couldn't swallow them.

An abortion? Because she can't swallow pills? So abortion was her birth control?

kristie911
10-31-2008, 08:32 AM
I was on Depo for a year. I've read a few things on line from people who liked it but I've read far more negatives. It completely destroyed my metabolism. I gained 10 lbs in one week because I wasn't able to work out (I ran 20 miles a week and strength trained 3 days just to maintain my weight while I was on it)...and I'm still struggling with that. Also, when I went off the shot to try getting pregnant, I had an ectopic pregnancy that burst and I nearly bled out. Turns out there is a much higher rate of ectopic pregnancies in women who have used Depo. It was convienient but definitely not worth it.

I'm now using the Nuvaring which I totally love!! It's great. I've done pills but I couldn't seem to regulate my periods while on them (2 or 3 weeks of periods a month sucks...and I tried 4 different types of pills) and the patch wouldn't stay on when I worked out because I'd sweat it off.

See a doctor, talk to them about it...do some research on your own. Good luck!

Eskimo1990
10-31-2008, 01:52 PM
Thanks guys this is all really helpful :)

Yes Jen, I do have a steady boyfriend...but that's actually not why I want birth control. He's waiting for marriage.

And I know that sexually active means all things. Which is why I answered yes. But that's not what this doctor meant.

sunna
10-31-2008, 03:11 PM
Lots of interesting reading in here. :)

The calcium route could be the way to go, at least to see if it works - but you should be visiting your doctor, a GYN, or PP for your annual from the moment you hit 18 onward, and you can talk to them about it. When I was looking for the right pill this summer I was really picky, because I went on it 10 years ago, went from a B to a C cup in 30 days, and started having migraines after I took it. The stuff I'm on now - Ocella (generic Yasmin) is much better.

If you decide birth control is the way to go, do some research, and then talk to your doc. This (http://www.wdxcyber.com/ncontr13.htm) might help a bit - it breaks down the levels of estrogen and progestin in each kind of pill, and suggests which ones might be better for certain problems like cramps, depression, severe PMS, etc. The tables are about halfway down. It's worth taking a look before talking to your doctor.

Good luck!

L M Ashton
10-31-2008, 03:35 PM
I didn't use to have bad cramps, but with each period they seem to get worse.
Plus my cycle is always super long and I hate it.
So I know birth control will reduce both those things.

What is the best kind of birth control for me?

It's not that simple. :)

You've already received some excellent advice. I'll just add a few more thoughts.

The first thing you need to do - with a doctor - is find out why your periods are the way they are. Endometriosis? Cysts? PID? Hormone imbalances? And you won't necessarily find a reason, or the doc might not be able to figure it out, but at least rule out everything you can. If you have a medical condition that can cause problem periods, it's best to find out and deal with it.

The other thing is that, like others mentioned, different people react to different drugs in different ways. The pill might not work for you. It doesn't work for everyone. Personally, I've tried dozens of different formulas, including depo provera, and the only thing that works for me is to be on BCP constantly, no breaks, so I never have any kind of bleed. If I bleed, I suffer horribly, regardless of whatever kind of hormone treatment I'm currently on. Or not.


Yeah, see the gyn about it and then be prepared to switch and change methods until you find what works right for you. I tried the pills when I was about 17 or so for the same reason, but they made my cramps worse. It seems that all methods of birth control had adverse effects on my body. I tried the depo shot. Most of my friends swear by those that they have almost no period and no cramps. Well, didn't work for me. I had the complete opposite effects. Then about 10 years later, when I was ready for birth control again, (after my second child) I used the patch. I only used it for a year, but I still have a rash-like scar at the bottom of my back, top of my butt, from where it felt like it burned me, and that was 4 years ago. But I have many friends who have used all of these and loved them, my body just didn't agree. So, yeah, see the gyn and try what she recommends for your body type and situation.

Yeah, I had the depo weight gain, too. 20 pounds in one weekend. Eating vegetarian, lots of raw veggies, no sweets, yadayadayada. Everyone calls it impossible, but some people have strange metabolic responses.

Of course, now I understand why - sort of - it happened to me. Long story involving a genetic collagen defect and how hormones react to it.

I had similarly bizarre reactions to other hormone treatments. It happens, unfortunately.


One last thought. It's true that you can deal with this with a family practice/general practitioner doctor, but if they're not taking the steps to see if there's a reason behind the problematic periods or if they can't figure things out, definitely go to an ob/gyn instead.

HeronW
10-31-2008, 04:12 PM
Yuppers to the above, find a Dr you can trust and yes, I prefer female Dr's too. They don't go in like they're moving the furniture because they don't know where things go :}

Ask the Dr about vitamin and mineral supplements for the wrong time of the month

Heavy bleeding can be normal or not, calcium is helpful, and taking iron wouldn't hurt either since many women feel icky and tired due to low iron.

If you like beef liver, that's a great source (done up with crisp bacon and onions was my fav) if you don't then tablets help--just don't take iron and calcium together--they reduce each other's effectiveness.

Pamprin is still a good choice for cramps. A heating pad or hot bath can help sometimes too.

An obgyn exam can rule out uterine cysts and meomas that would be a cause of heavy bleeding and cramps. My partner is on an IUD for a meoma that required 3 units of blood. It caused such heavy bleeding she passed out 4x before we got her to the hosp.

Menses is the price we pay for being able to give live birth :}

Be kind to yourself during these times, eat well, 3 oz of dark chocolate every day during this week helps, I kid you not.

good luck

Komnena
10-31-2008, 04:29 PM
As regards swallowing pills, I find ice cream a big help.

Alpha Echo
10-31-2008, 04:38 PM
I'm on Seasonique and love it. I only get my period once every 3 months. It's fantastic. I too, had horrible cramps that I no longer get, and my period is very light and very short.

chevbrock
10-31-2008, 04:59 PM
And pap tests aren't so bad either, I reckon. Five minutes in and out - it's not as though the Doc is putting his hands anywhere close - it's all guarded by instrumentation. I'm sure the Doctor isn't counting it as one of the highlights of his day, either.

I'd take a pap test over an internal any day.

Clair Dickson
10-31-2008, 05:39 PM
There are several soft vitamin chew-- Calcium, Multivitamin, etc. Viactive comes in a purple container. I know Meijer carries them, and their own generic brand. (Is that Westland... Michigan? Then you know Meijer.) They're in the Vitamin aisle. Calcium is good. B-6 and B-12 can help a lot of women, too (How many dark, green vegetables do YOU eat every day? ;-)

I was able to get rid of my debilitating cramps (they'd ache down my legs so I could barely stand) by eating better and taking vitamins. I also watch how much chocolate I eat during that week before my period-- if it's a "chocolate week" I make sure to balance it with extra vitamins in pill or food. But I also admit a SERIOUS aversion to taking any medicines I don't "need" to and if I can find an alternative solution, I'd rather that. It took a while before I got my diet all straightened out... and I started feeling a lot better over all.

If you go the diet route (which can't hurt, anyway!), it can take at least two months before you start to notice a difference at the end of the month. So, give it time. Best of luck with whatever you choose-- but find a doctor you can talk to. They can't take care of you if you don't talk to them. It may take a few tries before you find a doctor you like. That's okay too.

jennifer75
10-31-2008, 09:23 PM
As regards swallowing pills, I find ice cream a big help.

Oooh sick to my stomache just thinking about the pills........I can't even take multi-vitamins, I get woozy.

Something to think about Esk.......the illness that can come with oral contraception.

Taking at night made no difference for me.

jennifer75
10-31-2008, 09:30 PM
You know, this thread may have had only one purpose, but it actually very helpful for all of us.

I've been considering going back on oral b.c. to eleviate my symptoms from ovulation. I have it worse when I ovulate, than when I have my period.

Anybody with me?

I've already seen a doc...and have no reason to think anything other than ovulating is going on in there.

It's always very predictable, same aches and pains. Same weight gain, same crappy attitude. Same cravings.

It's funny, and sad at the same time, I have my skinny week, a week after my period. Then I fill right back up until the same time next month. So I have pms sypmtoms 3 out of 4 weeks a month.

Should I post the schedule? ;) Reppies greatly appreciated those 3 weeks.

threedogpeople
10-31-2008, 09:50 PM
Yeah I know. But that's what this doctor meant

I always thought sexually active meant have you done ANYTHING sexual. Not just intercourse....

Since you can get an STD from 'other than intercourse' I would have thought the doctor meant ANYTHING, too.

===============

I'm on Brevicon and I take them continually so I haven't had a period in 4 years (yay!!). Make sure and ask your doctor about it, they are the only ones that can help you decide if it is right for you. In my case, my cycles were making my pain levels go way up. By taking the pills continually I don't have the ups and downs related to the hormones.

Back in my 20s I had a Norplant (small hormone sticks placed under the skin on your upper arm). They are good for 5 years. Loved it! But, I don't know if they are still on the market. It was a bit painful getting it inserted (just the bruising after) but having it removed was a piece of cake.

Judy

tjwriter
10-31-2008, 10:02 PM
The pill did help me with the severity of my cramps, but the hormones really messed with my mood. I also started spotting between ovulation and my period, which had never happened before.

I opted to stay away from the pill and we went back to condoms for sole method of birth control.

Eskimo1990
10-31-2008, 11:23 PM
Since you can get an STD from 'other than intercourse' I would have thought the doctor meant ANYTHING, too.
Judy

I know that. So I answered yes. and boom finger inside of me, me freaking out because I don't even use freakin tampons because...well it scares me for some odd reason...anyways.
And THEN after all that he's talking about starting me on all these drugs JUST IN CASE because I'm sexually active. So I'm freaking out, and my mom's like "Woah, wait, slow down. Explain to her what you mean by sexually active, cause I think she's a little confused."
So doctor turns to me and goes "Have you had intercourse?"
Me: No, I'm a virgin.
Him: Hm, well that changes things.

Like he couldn't tell when he shoved his finger up there???? Aren't doctors supposed to like...be able to tell about those things??

[/end rant]

Silver King
11-01-2008, 04:26 AM
Someone brought to my attention earlier that it's a risky business asking for medical advice from strangers here who aren't health professionals, and I tend to agree. Please consult your doctor, or several, before making any final decisions about matters concerning your body and mind and overall wellbeing.