# Supplements that Affect Birth Control
Birth control pills are a reliable means of preventing unwanted pregnancy. However, certain supplements can interfere with the effectiveness of the pill. If you take any supplements, it is crucial to understand how they might affect your birth control pills.
In this article, we will discuss the supplements that can affect birth control and what you can do to prevent the pill’s ineffectiveness.
## Supplements that can Decrease the Effectiveness of Birth Control Pills
1. St. John’s Wort
St. John’s Wort is a popular herbal supplement that people take to relieve symptoms of depression, anxiety, and insomnia. However, it can decrease the effectiveness of birth control pills. This supplement increases liver enzymes, which metabolize estrogen in the birth control pill. When the liver enzymes break down estrogen faster than usual, it reduces the hormone’s effectiveness in preventing pregnancy.
2. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is an essential nutrient that people often take as a supplement. High doses of Vitamin C can interfere with the body’s ability to absorb estrogen. Since birth control pills contain synthetic estrogen, the effectiveness of the pill decreases in the presence of high doses of Vitamin C. It is important to note that regular amounts of Vitamin C found in food are unlikely to cause any problems.
3. Vitamin A
Vitamin A supplements can also interfere with the effectiveness of birth control pills. High doses of Vitamin A can cause liver toxicity and increase liver enzymes’ activity. This increase in liver enzymes can decrease estrogen’s effectiveness in the body, making birth control pills less effective.
## Supplements that can Increase the Effectiveness of Birth Control Pills
1. Folic Acid
Folic acid is an essential nutrient that people take to prevent birth defects during pregnancy. However, it can also increase the effectiveness of birth control pills. Folic acid can increase the body’s ability to absorb estrogen, making the birth control pill more effective.
2. Vitamin B6
Vitamin B6 supplementation can also increase the effectiveness of birth control pills. Vitamin B6 increases estrogen levels in the body, which can enhance the pill’s effectiveness.
## What to do if you take Supplements and Birth Control Pills
If you’re taking any supplements and using birth control pills, it’s important to consult your healthcare provider. They can advise you on whether the supplements you’re taking can interfere with birth control pills’ effectiveness.
If you decide to continue taking supplements, it’s essential to monitor any changes in your menstrual cycle. If you miss a period or experience unusual bleeding, you should take a pregnancy test and consult your healthcare provider.
In conclusion, birth control pills are an effective means of preventing unwanted pregnancy. However, certain supplements can interfere with the effectiveness of the pill. It’s important to consult your healthcare provider before taking any supplements if using birth control pills. Monitoring changes in your menstrual cycle can also help you detect any problems early.