What's in Your Birth Control Pills?

There are two ingredients in a birth control pill: estrogen and progesterone. When the makers of the birth control pill got their pattent for the pill, they got a pattent for a dose of estrogen and a dose of progesterone.

Generic pills, like brand name pills, have Estrogen and Progesterone. The difference between the two is that generic pills are allowed a 20% leeway on the active ingredients by the FDA. Are they putting the full amount in there? Absolutely not, they are putting 20% less because they can.

If they only put 80% of the estrogen in there and 90% progesterone, it causes side effects. Those side effects can be acne, weight gain, oily skin, breakthrough bleeding (irregular bleeding that may occur during the middle of the month). So when you get a generic pill, you are getting different doses of the active ingredients that you would with a brand name pill, that could potentially cause side effects.

Whats the difference between all the pills?

They all have the same type of estrogen, just different types and amounts of progesterone. So how do we take care of this? For my patients, I take a natural estrogen and add it to your birth control pill to help eliminate those unwanted side effects.

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