Friday, January 28

CBD And Birth Control: All You Need To Know

Over the last few years, CBD has managed to become a household name. People worldwide are using this medicinal cannabinoid due to its therapeutic properties. Since CBD use for medical purposes is still relatively new, at least legally, there are few reports on possible contraindications between CBD and prescription medications, such as contraceptive pills or hormonal contraceptives.

Are you someone who uses birth control pills? Do you wonder how using CBD with birth control can affect your body? This might be the place for all your answers. Keep reading to know about what they are and the consequence these two items have on your body.

CBD And Birth Control: All You Need To Know

What is CBD, and how does it work?

While you might have already heard about CBD or even used it, do you know what it is? It is a unique chemical compound present in the cannabis plant, known for its medicinal properties. CBD helps combat a wide range of health troubles, both physical and psychological. The cannabinoid is available in numerous forms today; however, CBD edibles remain the most popular ones. They allow you to ingest CBD in a discreet and fun way and also enjoy long-lasting effects. 

Are you wondering how CBD can help? It is due to the endocannabinoid system in your body. The endocannabinoid system is a complex structure of cells regulating bodily functions like mood, memory, immunity, appetite, and even reproduction. It produces neurotransmitters called cannabinoids to bind with receptors and initiate change in your body.

When you ingest CBD, it works similar to the natural cannabinoids produced by the endocannabinoid system. They bind with CB1 and CB2 receptors present in your cells, hormones, and organs to initiate change. Due to the communication between CBD and the endocannabinoid system, it can help regulate many functions. 


Birth control pills: how do they work?

Oral contraception, commonly known as birth control tablets, is taken orally to help avoid conception. They’re an excellent birth control tool. Birth control pills are divided into two categories:

  • Combination pills

There are two aspects that combination pills operate. The first stops the body from ovulating. This ensures your ovaries would not produce an egg every month. Second, these tablets allow the cervical mucus to thicken. This mucus is a substance that surrounds the cervix and helps semen in reaching your uterus to fertilize an embryo. Sperm cannot penetrate the uterus because of the thickened mucus.

  • Progestin-only pills

Progestin-only pills function in many ways. They primarily act by thickening the cervical mucus and thinning the endometrium. The endometrium is the uterine lining in which an egg attaches after it has been fertilized. If this lining is tighter, it would be more difficult for an egg to implant, preventing a fetus from developing. Progestin-only pills can also inhibit ovulation.

Progestin-only pills

Does CBD affect birth control pills?

Here comes the tricky part. What would happen if you are on birth control pills and decide to take CBD or vice versa? There can be specific strong effects of taking CBD along with birth control pills, some of which may be beneficial to your body and some not so much. Dig right in to know more about the effects they have on your body:

  1. CBD’s reaction to hormones:

  • It competes against Estradiol.

Estradiol is one of the three estrogen receptors that the body usually produces. Estradiol levels rise before the egg matures and is released from the ovary, as well as the stiffening of the uterine wall needed to insert a fertilized egg.

Scientists investigated CBD’s interference with estrogen receptors in rats in a report conducted in the study of Neuroscience and Experimental Therapies. Cannabis has neither estrogenic nor non-estrogenic effects at high levels.

Only cannabidiol, out of many other popular cannabinoids studied, compared with Estradiol for receptor attachment. Only at substantial cannabidiol concentrations did this binding action become apparent. It means that CBD inhibits estrogen-based contraception from functioning correctly, thereby increasing the likelihood of premature pregnancy.

  • It interacts with sex hormones.

Hormonal contraception happens by altering the action of hormones. The progestogen is an essential component in any hormonal contraception system.

Synthetic versions of progesterone, a naturally occurring sex hormone, are known as progestogens. The primary function is to inhibit ovulation by causing a reduction in luteinizing hormone via a negative feedback process.

Excessive use of cannabinoids extracted from the cannabis plant slowed sexual maturation in females, disrupted the menstrual cycle, and decreased sex hormone concentrations in the blood.

  1. CBD help alleviates the side effects:

While birth control pills are essential for women who wish to avoid pregnancy, they can induce a wide range of side effects. It can include anxiety, mood swings, nausea, and even headaches. Plenty of women worldwide are now using the cannabinoid CBD and their birth control pills to counter the side effects of the pills. Here’s how CBD can help:      

  •  Anxiety:

CBD is known for its anti-anxiety properties, which may help calm your body and mind and alleviate anxiety symptoms.

  • Mood swings:

A highly impactful side effect of birth control is frequent mood swings. Using CBD can change how brain chemicals react to the happy hormone – serotonin to prevent mood swings and keep you happy.

  • Nausea:

The cannabinoid CBD may also work effectively in reducing nausea and vomiting by preventing the stimulation of receptors in sensory cells.

  • Headache:

While CBD can help reduce pain caused by menstrual cramps, it can also alleviate your headache. It can relieve stress to calm your mind, and immediately offer relief from headaches or even migraines.  

relief from headaches

Final thoughts

Now the big question: Can you take CBD if you’re already on hormonal birth control? Will you consider using CBD if you want to resume taking birth control? The responses aren’t clear since there still isn’t much proof.

Many women have taken CBD to counteract the adverse effects of contraception without risks. However, many reports say the contrary, although it’s crucial to note that the vast majority of these arguments are based on anecdotal evidence. In practice, the ability for birth control and CBD to combine depends on many variables, including the form of birth control used, the quantity of each drug taken, and environmental influences specific to you.

When combining CBD with medicines such as birth control pills, it’s better to be cautious. Before using CBD, talk to your doctor, particularly if you’re on hormonal contraception or other prescription pills.

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