Articles and Topics
Is it safe to take oral contraceptives while you’re nursing?
Q: I am 7 months pregnant with my second child and plan to nurse. Are oral contraceptives 100% safe to use while I’m nursing? I have been looking everywhere to find information about nursing and using birth control, but can't find any results of long-term studies.
A: Nursing women should not consider using traditional oral contraceptives while nursing. Numerous organizations, including the Food and Drug Administration and the World Health Organization, state that birth control pills containing estrogen should not be used while nursing because the estrogen in these pills is transmitted to the baby through the breast milk.

There is a mini-dose pill consisting of progesterone that is approved by the Food and Drug Administration for nursing mothers. Micronor® and Nor-QD are the most commonly prescoted pills in this group. They are very safe and effective.

Alternatively, you can take a shot of Depo-Provera™ every three months. It is just as safe and effective as the two mini-dose pills mentioned above. The only concern I have about the injection is that if you have an unpleasant side effect—the most common are bloating, weight gain and spot bleeding—it will stay with you for three months. That’s why I usually encourage my patients to try the pills for at least one month before taking the injection.