Study Links the Pill to Depression

If your social media feeds are anything like ours, you may have seen a new study about the pill and depression being posted multiple times yesterday. Understandably so, because it is a pretty big deal since it reveals a true link between the pill and depression in women. Add another side effect to hormonal contraceptives to the already long list that has now been backed up by solid science.

Mood swings are a common side effect of the pill and are often why women choose to stop taking it. In a nearly 13-year-long study of one million women between the ages of 15 and 34. this recent Danish study has confirmed that those mood swings are a more serious side effect than they’re often made out to be.

We decided to pass the study along to our Senior Scientific Advisor, Mike Manhart, Ph.D., for his review of its validity and credibility (because you never know with the internet). “This is a VERY solid study. The authors state in the review that >80 percent of women in Denmark are using hormonal contraception so this is really a population-based study — not a selected group.” Manhart also mentioned that Denmark was able to examine all women (ages 15-34) and their use of hormonal contraception in relation to a first time anti-depressant prescription or a clinical diagnosis of depression through a unique ability they have in using a data collection system.

In this article, Holly Grigg-Spall talks about the study as well as her personal experience and fight against the birth control pill in favor of more natural and less harmful methods. She discusses the study’s conclusions that teens are at a higher risk of becoming depressed, no matter the type of method. This is often a controversial topic as many doctors will recommend LARCs (long-acting reversible contraceptives) as an option for teens so that they don’t have to remember to take a pill everyday, but these types of contraception are just as likely to make a teen depressed, along with all of their other harmful side effects.

This study further proves how harmful taking hormonal contraception can be for women, and the science doesn’t lie. Manhart concluded, “This study shows that the impact [of depression] is not rare, not limited to a particular type and is actually most acute in the young women that the American Academy of Pediatrics advocate putting hormone-laden IUDs in universally.”

Share this with the young women you care about!

— Megan Imwalle
Communications Intern