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Nicotine and Birth Control

Discussion in 'The Women's Room' started by Menolly, Apr 20, 2009.

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  1. Menolly

    Menolly Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Mar 14, 2009
    Austin, TX
    Most birth control product inserts I've read say that smoking while using the product will increase the risk of blood clots and stroke. I know that nicotine constricts vessels and increases blood pressure, but I haven't been able to find any studies (yet) on the effects of nicotine (minus the smoke) combined with hormonal birth control.

    I'd imagine that the increased risk is still present as long as you're still using nicotine, but does anybody know any specifics regarding this?
  2. Mary Kay

    Mary Kay ECF Guru ECF Veteran

    Apr 3, 2009
    West Tampa Fl.
    Geez Louise, I hadn't thought of this. I wonder if it affects hormone replacement? I don't need hot flashes and chin hair!
  3. ShimmyPrincess

    ShimmyPrincess Super Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 27, 2009
    The Windy City
    Being that I'm 38 and was a smoker, my doctor said she would not want to prescribed birth control unless I went on the patch or gum (or Chantix *shivers*) I can only guess it's safer to consume just nic than the whole shabang with analogs? I'll have to ask her at my next check-up...great question!
  4. Menolly

    Menolly Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Mar 14, 2009
    Austin, TX
    The drug information I've seen regarding the patch, gum, and lozenges recommends using a form of birth control during use to prevent pregnancy which could result in fetal illness. However, I'm afraid that most doctors/inserts/etc regarding NRT are looking at it as being temporary- just to quit smoking. I believe the mindset on this is that if there are risks from NRT+birth control, that the NRT isn't to be used long enough to statistically be more threatening. This doesn't account for prolonged use of nicotine products.

    I'd hope that vaping is still better than smoking in regards to drug interactions, but again- I couldn't find any statments that separated "Tobacco and birth control" and "nicotine and birth control". If it is the nicotine that causes the interactions, we may not be out of the clear.

    Actually, I just looked over the entire physician's and patient's inserts for my Mirena IUD and they don't mention a THING about smoking or tobacco. Just to watch out for high blood pressure.
  5. MrsJaaxx

    MrsJaaxx Unregistered Supplier ECF Veteran

    Feb 16, 2009
    Atlanta, GA
    That is a very good question. I outright lied at the doc's office when asked if I smoked (analogs) because I didn't want them to not let me be on the pill.. It works well for me and I have all the children that I need already. But they do a blood test, and my hemoglobin (sp?) was high. They thought this was unusual in a non-smoker. I was smoking analogs at the time. They did say that it could also be caused by eating a lot of green veggies, and I do eat a giant bowl of veggies almost every day in addition to 3/4 of my dinner plate being veggies.. so it's hard to say. Would be very interesting to see if my test results are different now that my nicotine comes mostly from vaping.
  6. Menolly

    Menolly Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Mar 14, 2009
    Austin, TX
    Sorry if it's off topic, but I find it kind of funny that cigarettes ("bad") and veggies ("good") can affect parts of the body in the same way.
  7. MrsJaaxx

    MrsJaaxx Unregistered Supplier ECF Veteran

    Feb 16, 2009
    Atlanta, GA
    I thought so too. They didn't seem to think the high hemaglobins (and I know I am not spelling that right) was a big deal as long as nothing else was going on.
  8. AlmondEyes

    AlmondEyes Full Member

    Apr 4, 2009
    Bucks Co, Penna
    Can't answer your question, but I suggest you look into an IUD. There are two kinds... one that releases hormones and lasts 8 years (I think) and one made with copper (which makes an unfriendly environment for eggs to land) that lasts 10 or 12 years. I got mine years ago when I had insurance and LOVE it. Periods are more painful and just getting it inserted killed me because I've never had a kid, so my cervix is tiny. But no pills to remember to take, I'll be in my 40s before I have to think about birth control again, they're more reliable than the pill, insurance paid for it all (even office visit), I'm confident in my IUD more than I was with the pill or the Depoprovera shot (is that even still around?).
  9. Menolly

    Menolly Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Mar 14, 2009
    Austin, TX
    Yeah, I've got the hormonal IUD (Mirena)- it's labeled for 5 years. Had it inserted when I was 21 (no kids), and it was...not a fun few minutes. It's totally worth it, though. Since the first 6 months, I haven't really had periods at all. Every so often I'll have a few days of spotting, but that's supposed to be normal.

    I know that it's not 100% guaranteed to prevent pregnancy (it is at the top end of effective birth control, though), but I can't trust myself to take a pill at the same time every day. Condoms are no fun, and the shots/ring/etc were getting way too expensive. A $30 co-pay at my doctor's office 2 years ago and I don't have to worry for another three! It's one of the best medical decisions that I've ever made for myself. I'll only be 26 when I need it removed- so I'll definately be signing up for the 5 year plan again-- I'm not anywhere near ready to be a mom. (I'm the same age as my mom was when she conceived me...and I was planned. It's a really weird thought.)
  10. TheWrathOfSanity

    TheWrathOfSanity Super Member ECF Veteran

    May 25, 2009
    Travis AFB, CA
    Digging up an old post.
    I'm so glad I searched the forums before asking the BC+VP question over in Health.

    This is a concern of mine and I spent the past few hours trying to dig up conclusive evidence on what chemicals of analogs will produce the heart problems and blood clots.
    And found nothing.
    It's all the same "you shouldn't smoke and take the pill" and so on.
    But nothing scientific.
    And I'm frustrated.
    I'm going to ask my doctor next time I see her.
  11. dawnlori

    dawnlori Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Apr 26, 2009
    North Dakota, USA
    Marykay, one of the reason I didn't do HRT is because of my heavy smoking. I went into full blown menopause when I was 40 and it was a SOB! Been 8yrs of flashes, weight gain and loss, but no facial hair, yet! Maybe with vaping I'll be able to get some relief, gotta ask the Dr. I do see a female GP and she is great about all female stuff. She even told me to not try and quit smoking in the winter because the whole weather thing up here is just to hard on people. Little did she know I didn't want to quit anyway! LOL Now I'm excited to tell her my new found passion. dawn
  12. thatgirl1985

    thatgirl1985 Full Member

    Mar 28, 2009
    Hi everyone, I'm new to the women's room on here.

    I just want to add my two cents. I've been on low-hormone birth control (like Yaz, Yasmin, Aviane) for about 8 years now (I'm 24). My GYNs have known that I smoke, and always asked how much. I have never smoked more than one-two packs per week.

    They never refused to prescribe the pill to me and did not seem overly concerned about the stroke/blood clot risk.

    Doesn't the pill package state that the risk is increased when the patient is over the age of 35 and is a heavy smoker? I guess that's why the doc didn't care so much.

  13. Wildsky

    Wildsky Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Mar 9, 2009
    I think most who are concerned are over the age of 35, and probably used to smoke more than a pack or two a week.
    I smoked a pack a day!

    I could never take birth control pills anyway, haven't taken any kind of "drug" birth control for going on 15 years now.
  14. SueandCootie

    SueandCootie Super Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    May 31, 2009
    south central Mass
    This is a big issue for me..still smoked a pack a day at 35,had been on the pill uninterupted since 13 due to medical problems...doc pulled me off the pills cold turkey due to smoking (didn't tell me any alternates for birth control, either, the idiot!) and my health fell apart within a few months. If I had known I would have lied, and if I knew that it wasn't just the flu and I'd never feel well again, I would have crawled under a rock 8 years ago!! It's only the estrogen based meds that are supposed to be trouble for smokers..that's why the mirena/iud/progesterin based depo shots are still recommended as b/c, altho they now think depo may add to bone density issues in older women. You know, a stroke wouldn't have been much worse than what I went thru after that doc pulled me off the b/c pills..I too have wondered since I started vaping if it's the nicotine or the smoking in general, OR IF THEY EVEN KNOW!!
  15. Junebug

    Junebug Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Jun 18, 2009
    Georgia, USA
    I would say they have no clue, it's why the uproar with the FDA.
  16. Ryle

    Ryle Super Member ECF Veteran

    Aug 21, 2008
    Durant, Ok
    I just read this thread and find it all very interesting unfortunately since I don't/won't take the pill (because I saw how emotional they all made my sister) but I have to ask.. how did you ladies convince the DR to give you an IUD without having had a kid first?? Every piece of info I've found and the Dr's I've spoken to all say they can't/won't do it unless you've had at least one child :( because theres some risk for infirtility (asif that's something I care about.. I'd make a horrible mother) .. I know it's a bit off topic but I had to ask :oops:
  17. SudokuGal

    SudokuGal Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Jul 15, 2009
    but I didn't want to start a new thread when there was one that was kinda related.

    Just saw a segment on CBS Early Show about a new British study on birth control. (Sooooooooo glad I no longer have to worry about that.) The study showed that not all bc is the same in relation to the risk of blood clots -- some have a higher risk.

    You want the estrogen part to be no more than 20mg and you want the progesterone part to be of a certain type -- I've already forgotten what that type is, but you can go to the CBS Early Show site to check it out.
  18. Kelly79

    Kelly79 Guest

    Jul 7, 2009
    I hate bc pills, thankfully that's not something I have to worry about for the next 6 or so months, lol, hey I just found the upside to my dh being gone lol. Course it's an upside that comes with a really big downside lol.
  19. Shan123

    Shan123 Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Apr 28, 2009
    Tampa, FL USA
    Late to the party, but I can throw down some praise for the Mirena. They are starting to be less restrictive about Rxing IUDs for women who haven't given birth -- I read that recently. Once I got past the insertion (not pleasant and I had kids) and bleeding steadily for 4 months (but I was doing that before), I have rarely had a period and that was 4 years ago. You don't even have to think about it.

    Except at first. For a few months I had a recurring dream that a huge squash-blossom necklace had fallen out of my innards. (The Mirena looks nothing like that.)

    The original question is a VERY good one. I take risks but appreciate that many don't want to. My uneducated guess is that the same caution applies. Estrogen can contribute to blood clots, though it's rare; nicotine's a vasoconstrictor; so we may have two great tastes that don't taste so great together.
  20. Kelly79

    Kelly79 Guest

    Jul 7, 2009
    Got Mirena a few years back, and I only have one bad thing to say about it, the insertion can be described in one word OUCH!!!!!:cry: (I should mention that I have a ridiculously abnormally high pain tolerance threshold), although some docs will dilate you a bit so it doesn't hurt practically at all, military docs won't though.
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