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Lybrel Birth Control Pills: No Period?

A while back, I discussed whether or not it was safe to get only four periods a year by using Seasonale birth control pills. It is safe, and here's why: When you take the week of sugar pills while on birth control, the period you get isn't a real period, since the hormones prevent you from ovulating and you're not releasing an egg. It's actually a pill period, and it is your body's reaction to the withdrawal of hormones. Having a pill period every month is just as safe as having one every three months.

OK, but what about having no periods at all? The birth control pill Lybrel is all over this idea. For the details,


This low-dose combination birth control pill allows you to take it 365 days a year with no sugar pills, so you don't get any pill periods. Some women do experience unscheduled bleeding or spotting in the first six months (or longer) but for many, they'll take that over a monthly period any day. So is it safe to take hormones 365 days a year and never get your period?

Since the period you get while on the pill isn't a real period and is unnecessary, doctors feel that it's OK to get it once a month, every three months, or never at all. The FDA approved this pill in May 2007, but since this is a fairly new drug on the market, the long-term effects are unknown. In addition, cancer experts are concerned about the possible health risks of taking hormones continuously, since there are no long-term studies yet about whether it could cause breast cancer or other hormone-fueled tumors.

As with all methods of birth control, you have to choose the one that fits in with your needs and lifestyle. If not getting your period sounds like the best news ever, talk to your doctor about your questions and concerns. If unscheduled spotting and unknown long-term side effects don't bother you, then Lybrel could be your new best friend.


Join The Conversation
frenchie77 frenchie77 8 years
I think it's safe enough - but I think it still tampers too much with your body. It's not so much the bleeding (or not) but the never ovulating, that bothers me. The pill really tampers too much with your system. I got extremely moody, snappy, depressive and just plain strange on the pill. I had horrible cramps constantly, migraines, sore breasts... and it just wasn't worth it for me. Not to mention I was constantly exhausted.
miss-jaxx miss-jaxx 9 years
Ive been on the pill for 7 years now and skip my period at least 3x a year by skipping the placebo pills and just continuing to a new pack. My gyno swears its safe because its true... the period you get is fake anyway. Weird to think of it that way but its true. The body is essentially tricked into thinking it's pregnant so you wouldnt be getting your real period and dont while on the pill.
jJuliet jJuliet 9 years
I am on a hormonal IUD, and I haven't gotten a period for years. I could never go back to having periods.
Lovaajn Lovaajn 9 years
here here, jill!!! people are so uneducated in SO many things!
jillerin457 jillerin457 9 years
It's not "cleaning itself out." The uterus is shedding its lining. When you're on hormonal BC constantly, the uterus simply doesn't build up lining that needs to be shed. For some women, it takes a while for their bodies to get on this cycle, but that's what is happening. It's not like those who skip periods are slowly letting their uteruses get full of that stuff; they're just avoiding the whole pointless process. Maybe you should do more research on how your own body works before you start calling people "crazy."
I'm sorry, but I find the idea that your body doesn't need to clean itself out every month a bit crazy. Also, a lot of the pills that promise to only give you a period once a quarter usually list spotting, possibly for months at a time, as a side effect. How exactly is that regulating anything? I've heard of girls going on these pills to reduce their number of periods, and then they end up having a period for 3 months at a time. No thanks.
jillerin457 jillerin457 9 years
The symptoms take a little longer to go away, but they do eventually subside. If you have another condition that having a period exacerbates, by all means, SKIP IT! There is no medical reason to suffer!
Merlin713 Merlin713 9 years
But wouldn't you still experience the PMS even if you skip the sugar pills? Or after a while, like many have said, does it go away? I take a three week pill and then one week of sugar pills. I've never "skipped" so to speak but I am very tempted to lately because it's such an inconvenience to have my period. I have ulcerative colitis(for about two years now), and having my period really makes me much more sick for at least two weeks.
jillerin457 jillerin457 9 years
I'm with SnowBunny - I don't get why women "need" to have a fake period to feel okay. If you're worried about long-term effects, why are you taking hormonal BC at all? 3 weeks a month instead of 4 can't be much better, if it really is harmful. I use Nuvaring for 4 weeks straight, and put the next one in right away. The spotting has gradually decreased, and I've been a lot less emotional now that I'm on a constant dose, rather than the roller coaster of tri-cyclic pills with a placebo week. Honestly, I don't really care if this does affect my fertility later. I've had HORRIBLE periods my whole life before being on BC, and I've never really wanted to be pregnant anyway. I don't like babies, and I don't like having periods, and I've finally found a way to avoid both indefinitely! Thank God for modern medicine!!!
JaimeLeah526 JaimeLeah526 9 years
I'd go for it if I needed to be on the pill. It seems like it would be a lot more convenient. The spotting goes away after a little while and most likely you wouldn't be bleeding daily.
allthingsgrow allthingsgrow 9 years
If I knew it was completely safe and there are no long-term effects, I'd for sure do it. Periods are so inconvenient and painful.
snowbunny11 snowbunny11 9 years
I definitely ditch my sugar pills and take my bc pills continuously for three months in a row. As long as the hormones doled out by your pills don't fluctuate over the month, it's safe to do. I don't understand why women feel they need to get their periods when on bc because they are fake periods anyway? My ob/gyn tells me that none of her co-workers every bother to get their periods either.
Berlin Berlin 9 years
I'm on no pill/BC (other than my SO's v-sect!) and I haven't had my period in over 2 years now...What can I say, I love it:) Mine was as a result of low body fat but so far it hasn't raised any alarms with my body or the doctors, just some odd speculation.
PreppyDot PreppyDot 9 years
I have consulted three different OB/GYNs on the subject and they all say it is safe to not get your period. As I have been taking the pill for many years, and get these results with a standard 3 week/1 week sugar pill. I guess only time will tell about the side effects - but they all tell the same story that it is perfectly safe.
SusanTeufel SusanTeufel 9 years
I don't just seems odd to me. As much as I hate my period...I really rather not risk not being able to have children or getting cancer or something I'd be horribly devastated.
Lambsauce Lambsauce 9 years
Mmn... no thanks. I'd take my regular, 12 pm on Tuesday of placebo pack to 10 am Friday pill period over random spotting any day.
meumitsuki meumitsuki 9 years
You are correct runningesq, having a monthly period is a relatively new thing. Even 40 - 50 years ago women were not menstruating as often, due to pregnancy and longer sustained breastfeeding. I personally think it has to due with all the hormones we ingest. My mother never remembered having a period monthly in her teens or 20s.
runningesq runningesq 9 years
Actually, we're not supposed to mensturate as often as we do. We (women) used to be pregnant much more often (start having kids early, have 'em early and often, die around 30) and therefore have fewer periods.
Shopaholichunny Shopaholichunny 9 years
Very interesting. I would be scared of the side effects of it like 15-20 years from now.
bengalspice bengalspice 9 years
Considering the pill is supposed to simulate being pregnant, I don't see how being on it for a longer period of time and having fewer "periods" is really different from ACTUALLY being pregnant.
TidalWave TidalWave 9 years
Scary stuff. I don't care if I only get a pill period, my body is supposed to menstruate once a month. Also, I can absolutely forego a couple days of bleeding instead of risking some serious reproductive side effects 15 years down the line.
Lovaajn Lovaajn 9 years
I'm on Lybrel. I love it. My uncle is head professor and lead researcher of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the university hospital here, and that is what he has his wife, my cousin, and myself on. He highly recommends it. I just mentioned the other day to my aunt that it was the best I'd been on. It completely cleared up my hormone related acne (which two other kinds of BC had been unable to do), my spotting is getting few and far between (my fam members don't even get spotting anymore), my PMS is way better. I think it is great. And I can't wait till I have no bleeding whatsoever.
catchawhale catchawhale 9 years
I use the nuva ring in a certain way so that I only get my period every couple months. My doctor said it's safe because if your body really needs to have a period, it will. I love only having my period a couple times a year. Its so easy!
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