Posted by: LDGH | 2009/06/02

Contraception causing depression, moodiness

I was taking the contraceptive pill a few years ago - I have tried different brands over the years - but experienced really bad mood swings, crying for no reason and depression. Once I realised that it could be the pill causing these side effects, I stopped and felt better immediately. These symptoms soon stopped altogether. Recently I have needed to go back on birth control and because of my previous experience, wanted to try something besides the pill. I tried the patch and the same depressive symptoms returned. While researching this it seems progestin might be the hormone responsible (reduces serotonin levels in the brain). This means I can' t try the mini-pill or the injection. So my questions are: is progestin the likely culpit in causing depression? And what are my options for birth control? (As a side I really don' t think most doctors give sufficient warning to patients about the possible emotional side-effects of hormonal contraception!) Any advice appreciated! Thanks.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageGynaeDoc

Progesterone can presdispose to depression if you have a tendency. You could try a non-hormonal contraceptive such as the IUCD.

Best wishes

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