Most of us at some point in our life, have felt unmotivated to go to work, don’t want to spend time with our loved ones, and/or struggled to get out of bed to face the day.  But if this is your reality on an on-going basis, and each day is a struggle - you could be suffering from depression. While for many this ends up with a doctor’s visit and a prescription for antidepressants, new research shows that for women, it could be the pill causing the problem.

Women Are At Greater Risk Of Depression When Taking The Pill

In a new study, one million Danish women between the ages of 15 and 34 were tracked for a total of 13 years - one of the biggest studies of it kind!

Researchers found that women taking the combined oral contraceptive (estrogen and progestin/ or oestrogen and progesterone for Australia) were 23% more likely to be diagnosed with depression. If you’re taking the progestin-only pill, your risk increases to 34% likelihood of being depressed! Tweet - Researchers found that women taking the pill were 23% more likely to be diagnosed with depression.

Teenagers are even more susceptible, with an 80% increased risk of depression when taking the combined pill, and two-fold that risk with the progestin-only pill.

What About Other Alternatives?

Unfortunately, other hormone-based methods such as the Intrauterine System/coil, patch and the ring increased depression rates even higher than either of the oral contraceptives.

Mood changes are one of the top reasons many women discontinue using the pill within the first year! Yet only now are we finally seeing some clarity and evidence to confirm what so many women experience.

What About The Other Risks?

One of the study’s authors, Øjvind Lidegaard, professor of obstetrics and gynaecology, also highlighted the risk of blood clots, especially with newer “improved” contraceptives such as the ring and patch.

Not to mention the most common potential side effects including:

  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Weight gain
  • Missed periods or spotting
  • Decreased libido
  • Problems with wearing contact lenses
  • Breast tenderness

While many women have no side effects or are taking the pill as a way to manage Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), acne, heavy or painful periods, endometriosis and other conditions, this new study highlights the importance of really being aware of what you’re putting into your body and the unexpected effects it may be having on you.

If you feel that you could be at risk of depression, whether you’re taking the pill or not, we urge you to seek assistance from a trusted health practitioner first and foremost. For other natural ways you can manage depression, explore our articles here and here.

If you know of someone who could be depressed, please share this article with them. It could change their lives forever.

What Has Been Your Experience With The Pill?