Friday, July 7, 2017
We get lots of questions from female visitors to the site who are heading off on holiday, about whether it's safe to take their pill packets back to back in order to actively skip a period while they are away. We got the lowdown from our dedicated GP.
"Delaying your period every now and again using progesterone tablets is quite safe and can be a real life-saver when periods are a nuisance. If you do it too often, you may find that you get some unpredictable and erratic bleeding. If you are finding that you want to do it very often then it would be better to take a regular, low dose contraceptive such as the progesterone-only pill.
"When the combined pill was invented, the aim was for it to mimic the natural cycle as much as possible by having a monthly withdrawal bleed. Modern advice tends to lean towards taking three packets in a row and then having a seven-day break to allow any build up of the lining of the womb to come away as a period. This is more convenient for those not wanting monthly bleeds, and from a contraception perspective is very safe. Remember never to allow the seven-day break to be extended as your ovaries would wake from their suppressed state and you may ovulate.
"Norethisterone is a synthetic copy of the female hormone, progesterone. When levels are naturally high (as in pregnancy, or when waiting for the fertilised egg) the lining of the womb is maintained. When levels drop (if implantation does not happen) then the lining of the womb comes away as a period. Taking it as a pill keeps the lining of the womb in place, delaying your period until you stop taking it. Theoretically, using Norethisterone to delay your period is very safe indeed, but if you are doing it too often, an every day low dose progesterone-only pill would be better."
If you are interested in delaying your period, speak to us today and let us advise you on your options. Find out more here.