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Birth Control Health Center

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Birth Control Pill Users Need Better Information

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Ask your doctor about new types of birth control pills, she advises. Some have low-dose hormones in the placebo pills, which can help eliminate some side effects like breakthrough bleeding. Other new pills can eliminate the monthly period for up to three months, "especially good if they're experiencing painful menstruation or endometriosis," Zlidar says.

"We want to send a wake-up call to women, ask them to get more involved, asking questions, demanding answers," she tells WebMD. "Every woman really has the ability to make this an effective method. If she can take the time to get the information she needs, she can be a successful user and be happy with the method."

"It's not surprising that so many people take the pills incorrectly," Lane Mercer, MD, MPH, a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Northwestern University Medical School in Chicago, tells WebMD.

The most common complication, he says, is that "people misunderstand the placebo week, especially college students." He advises women to try Mircette, a new pill that has hormonal pills during the placebo period.

The simplest, best advice? Just remember to take your pill every day you're supposed to. For more information, see your doctor.

For more information from WebMD, see our Living Better page on Healthy Sexuality.

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