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"Not taking the placebo on birth control and got my period. Is this normal?"

ZocdocAnswersNot taking the placebo on birth control and got my period. Is this normal?


so i have been on birth control a little over a month now, and I'm not allowed to take the placebo pills because I'm anemic and they want to build my blood back up. I woke up this morning with terrible period cramps and and a heavy period. These cramps are effecting my lower back and is this normal?


Thank you for your question regarding the placebo pills in your birth control. Placebo pills are inactive pills that do not contain any hormones. They are designed for you to take during the 4th week of your monthly cycle to allow for your menstrual period to begin. Taking the placebo pill has the same effect as not taking the placebo pill; either way, you will start your period because again the placebo pill has no medication in it and you are now allowing your body to shed blood from the uterine lining. Most newer birth control pills have placebo pills that contain substances such as iron and folate for added health benefits. If you are trying to take your birth control pills in a way to eliminate or reduce the frequency of your period, you should speak with your gynecologist. For example, some birth control pills are designed so that you continue to take active pills and only have a "placebo week" about 4 times a year for 4 annual periods. You can also continuously take only the active pills of regular birth control pills to avoid periods. With continuous hormone regimens, it is common to have irregular and unscheduled bleeding for the first few months. Usually this improves with continued use, but some women may continue to have some spotting with use of these continuous regimens. Please speak with your gynecologist about this problem, and he/she can help if it persists or worsens.

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