We all know that birth control pills are a popular choice for contraception, but did you ever wonder how they might affect your sexual arousal and vaginal health? Well, it turns out they could have a more significant impact than we thought.
You see, sexual health is crucial for a happy and fulfilling sex life, and for women, it involves things like lubrication and good blood flow to the genital area. These aspects are influenced by hormones like estrogen and androgen. But here’s the twist: certain medications, like oral birth control pills (OCPs), can mess with these hormone levels.
Now, before you panic, let’s dive into what a recent study found. A bunch of researchers decided to investigate the effects of two different types of OCPs on women’s sexual arousal and vaginal health.
They gathered 130 sexually active women between 18 to 35 years old for their study. Out of these, 59 were not taking any birth control and served as the control group. Then, there were 50 women on androgenic OCPs, which slightly increase androgen levels (like testosterone), and 21 on antiandrogenic OCPs, which reduce androgen levels.
To get the scoop, they used some nifty tools: a vaginal photoplethysmograph to measure blood flow, Schirmer Tear Test strips to check lubrication, and a self-reported vulvovaginal atrophy assessment to gauge vaginal tissue health.
The women came to the lab, talked about their sexual arousal, and then went through the tests while watching a couple of saucy films (with a break in between, of course). After all was said and done, they filled out some surveys.
The verdict? Well, it turns out that the type of birth control pill you’re on can impact your sexual arousal and vaginal health differently. Women taking antiandrogenic OCPs had lower vaginal blood flow and less lubrication compared to those on androgenic pills or none at all. Those on androgenic pills fell somewhere in between.
What’s more, the data hinted that women taking birth control pills, especially the antiandrogenic ones, might be more prone to experiencing female sexual arousal disorder. This could be because lower androgen levels might lead to reduced sexual desire.
Now, don’t get us wrong, birth control pills are fantastic for preventing unwanted pregnancies. But if you’re someone who’s worried about sexual arousal issues, it might be worth considering how these pills could affect your sexual well-being.
So, there you have it. Birth control pills can do wonders for family planning, but they might just throw a curveball when it comes to your sexual health. It’s essential to be informed and have open discussions with your healthcare provider to find the right balance for you.