Combination birth control pills are used to prevent pregnancy. They give you a regular dose of the hormones estrogen and progestin.
You take a hormone pill every day to prevent pregnancy.
Birth control pills come in packs. The most common type has 3 weeks of hormone pills. Some packs have sugar pills (they do not contain any hormones) for the fourth week. During that fourth no-hormone week, you have your period. After the fourth week (28 days), you start a new pack.
Some birth control pills are packaged in different ways. For example, some have hormone pills for the fourth week instead of sugar pills. Taking hormones for the entire month causes you to not have periods or to have fewer periods. Others are packaged so that you have a period every 3 months. Your doctor will tell you what type of pills you have.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
Always read the label for specific instructions, or call your doctor or nurse call line. Here are some basic guidelines:
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:
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Current as of:
May 30, 2016
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
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Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.