What if you didn't realize you were pregnant, and continued taking the pill? Will that cause a miscarriage? And how can you use the pill to most effectively prevent pregnancy? Obstetrical Nurse Wanda F Steele has some information.Your question
What happens when you are pregnant and start the pill, but you did not know you were pregnant? Will that cause a miscarriage? - PB, Warwick, NY
The expert answers
In answer to your question, NO, there is no evidence that the hormones in oral contraceptives will cause a miscarriage.
Oral contraceptives are a very effective method of birth control when taken properly, but if you are in doubt, have missed a few pills or show any of the early signs of pregnancy, then a blood test is indicated.
The birth control pill, although very effective, is not a 100% guarantee against a pregnancy. Much lower doses of hormones are used in todays oral contraceptives which makes them much safer than the pills of yester-year. While this decreased dosage makes the pills safer they are still not for everyone. Your caregiver should help you decide if they are right for you. Things that you should consider before starting oral contraceptives are:
- Are you a smoker?
- Do you have high blood pressure?
- Have you ever had a stroke, heart attack or blood clot?
- How old are you?
Certain things can affect the effectiveness of the pill which could make it easier for you to become pregnant while taking them.
Take your pills at approximately the same time every day. If you should miss a pill, take it as soon as you remember or double up on your pills the next day. If you miss two pills, call your caregiver for instructions and use an additional form of birth control such as condoms and foam. If you are taking antibiotics, they can affect the effectiveness of the pills. Use another form of contraception til after your next period and the antibiotic regimen is over.
Another consideration is that some people, over time, may have cycles where they do not having any bleeding at all. This can be perfectly normal. In the absence of any pregnancy symptoms and assurance that all pills have been taken properly, this is nothing to be concerned about.