If you have read part one of my blog series about coming off the pill you’ll know how much of a negative impact it can have on our holistic health. (If you haven’t read it, go check it out now before you continue with part two, click here) I’m sure you’re wondering, what happens when you take that leap to go cold turkey off the pill and when you stop swallowing these mini tablets of artificial hormones. I can’t speak for everyone, again this is all from my own experience. Let’s start by looking at common side effects that can pop up when you stop taking the contraceptive pill. Remember these changes and side effects that take place are all signs of your body getting back to it’s natural state.
Common side effects you may experience when you stop taking the pill. Remember most of them are short term while your body and hormones are getting back into their own flow:
- Lack of, or abnormal and/or irregular periods
- Breakouts, all the pimples
- Weight gain or weight loss, hormone imbalances can mess with your metabolism ¹
- Your hair might fall out²
- Increase or decrease in your usual PMS symptoms
- Quote “You might feel friskier” Unquote. The D might be on your mind more than you ever imagined.³
- You may feel the twinge or cramping mid cycle signalling ovulation known as Mittelschmerz⁴
- Your headaches may start to disappear ⁵
- And for anyone that needs it spelt out, you could get pregnant immediately if having unprotected sex. #obvs
A lot of the common side effects have negative connotations with them, but as I mentioned above, it is your way of your body getting back to basics and the long term effects will be reversing (hopefully) all the not so great things being on the pill can do to our poor bods I mentioned in Part One e.g. improved gut health, increased and stable mood, mucus regulation, improved liver function… and the list goes on.
Here is what I have experienced over the past year after I stopped taking the contraceptive pill:
- A stable mood with less mood swings. Things just don’t make me irritable as much as they used too. Especially the week before my period when I was taking the pill, I would rage, for no reason (which it totally fine by the way). Now I rarely experience mood swings on those levels. I do still experience a very low mood a couple of days before my period, but apart from that I can honestly say that my mood has been the steadiest it has ever been throughout my cycle.
- Ahh. I didn’t know how far down the list to put this one, but let’s rip the bandaid off. Acne. Pimples. White heads. Black heads. On my jaw line. On my neck. On my shoulders. On my back. This is one side effect that I really struggle with as I’ve never had bad skin before #firstworldproblems. I’ll get into what I’ve been doing to support this in part three. My skin has improved a fraction recently and it all comes down to what is going on in the inside, hormones, gut health and nutrition. This is a very common side effect that puts a lot of people off from making that choice to stop taking the pill.
- My periods were regular when I came off the pill, but the length of my cycle took awhile to sort itself out. My periods have never been horrific, but they actually became lighter and shorter when I stopped taking the pill. I use an awesome app called Clue where I track my cycle which I’ll share about more in part three. But it is more than normal for your period to go MIA for awhile (or an extended period of time) when you do come off the pill, so don’t stress.
- Changes in weight. This is one I hadn’t thought about until one of my lovely followers, Wendy, asked me if I had noticed any changes. I’m pretty positive there has been no direct correlation from coming off the pill to changes in my weight. But in saying that, weight is not something I focus on, perhaps if it was more on my radar I may have noticed some kind of difference. Now that we mention it, I do weigh a good 5kg heavier than when I was taking the pill – but this could be due to a number of environmental factors. I’m happy and healthy therefore I’m not to concerned with this one. It is important to note that hormones do play a huge role when it comes to fat loss. Dr Libby is an expert on this.
- I have become more in tune with my body. Yep the more time you take to get to know your body and it’s signals, the more aware you become of where you are at in your cycle, how it can impact your holistic health and the best times of the month to take it easy or take advantage of endless energy (and of course the best time of the month to try make babies). Our bodies are mind blowing when you take the time to understand exactly what they do every single day. Something to be grateful for today, your bod.
All side effects aside, I would never go back on the contraceptive pill personally! Coming off it, the positives 100% outweigh the negatives, which really is only the ongoing pimples. But they’re slowly getting better with the help of a balanced diet and hormonal support. Part Three will be showcasing products and supplements I’ve used to help with these changes! Do you have any questions? Please leave a comment below!