Can I go on the pill?


Q: I am 16 years old and I live in the UK. I am classified as obese, but I am trying to lose weight. I was wondering due to my weight issues the doctors wouldn't give me the pill, even though I only want it to help with my periods?


A:   Obesity is a long and difficult battle that one must fight against to ensure a healthy life. It is wonderful that you are trying to lose weight and all the very best with that.
Being overweight or obese limits your contraceptive choices. The risk with using any hormonal contraceptive is dual- firstly that you may not be adequately protected and will be at a high risk of failure and secondly that estrogen based methods put you at risk of developing atrerial and venous thrombo-embolic disease. This being a serious health hazard, most doctors will be reluctant in prescribing the combined birth control pill to a person with a high BMI.
The options available to you are- using an intrauterine device, progesterone only pills, or the barrier methods with emergency contraception. The Copper IUD is a reversible sterilization method and will provide effective birth control for 3 - 5 years but it has its own limitations, chief among which is the risk of pelvic infections. Injection DMPA or progesterone only pills are generally criticized for causing an irregular breakthrough bleeding and also for the possibility of associated weight gain. Barrier methods and emergency contraceptive pills are easy to use but less reliable as compared to the other methods.
A thorough discussion with your contraceptive counselor or doctor will give you an understanding of the pros and cons of each method enabling you to choose a method that is best suited to you. Do visit a family planning clinic for more guidance and information.

Related Q&A

Q: I recently used Encare as a contraceptive, but I was not able to put it into the cervix properly, so I just left it i...

Q: Would the morning after be worth getting if engaged in unprotected sex approx 9 or 10 days after getting a positive o...

Q: Is it normal having vaginal bleeding after taking Postinor 1 tablet? I take the tablet five days ago and bleeding is ...

Q: My girlfriend drank nordette yeterday at 8 as an Ecp and drank again 12 hours later. Today she should be expecting he...

Q: I took the morning after pill yesterday (36 hours after intercourse) as I have been off the pill for quite awhile due...


Dr. James Obaji M.D.

  • 247 Reviews
  • Family Physician

Dr. Suneel Sharman M.D.

  • 190 Reviews
  • Family Physician

Dr. Pat Golden M.D.

  • 169 Reviews
  • Cardiologist

Dr. Kunaal Jindal M.D.

  • 112 Reviews
  • Plastic Surgeon