These days, as more and more teenagers engage in pre-marital sex, birth control options such as condoms and pills should be readily available in order to stop the spread of sexually transmitted diseases, as well as prevent teenage pregnancy.
And for some women, taking birth control pills are much more than preventing pregnancy, with some taking them to help even out their hormonal imbalances that then lowers their levels of testosterone and help regulate their period, which is already painful as it is.
However, a news headline recently linked birth control pills with depression, causing some doctors to immediately get mad.
The gist is that taking birth control pills as a teenager can apparently increase your likelihood of suffering from depression when you get older. And while early research points to experts looking at the many side effects one can get from taking hormonal birth control, the apparent link to depression is actually less than certain.
“This is a premature connection,” Cora Breuner, a pediatrician at Seattle Children’s Hospital, said.
According to Breuner, this business of putting too much of your plate in preliminary evidence can be disastrous for teenagers taking the pill since it could lead to unwanted pregnancies that could upend their lives.
“Birth control gets all of the worry and concern. But we know that other things are much more dangerous. Teen pregnancy, for instance. Access to effective birth control is vital for sexually active teenagers,” Katharine O’Connell White, Ob-gyn and contraception researcher at Boston University School of Medicine, who agrees with Breuner, said .
This started last summer when a report raised a potential flag because it revealed that women who take birth control pills as teenagers are more likely to develop depression as adults. This led to a worrisome trend, which linked the use of hormonal birth pills to higher rates of depression later. The study also came at a time when 16 percent of women who take the pill met the criteria for clinical depression.
“There might be a long-lasting relationship between birth control use and depression later on,” Christine Anderl, study co-author and a psychologist at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, said.
However, Anderl is aware of the study’s limitations and believes that more research is needed to make a more conclusive finding.