Includes Expert Content
Mood swings/ Sprintec BC
jessd5 posted:
I have been on Sprintec birth control for about a year now. I have noticed my mood swings are extremely high around my period the past few months. The week before my period I go into a bad depression. I over anaylyze everything, feel overwhelmed very easily and cry at the drop of a hat. I feel completely hopeless. I get to thinking I am depressed and need help, but then after my period is over, these symptoms disappear for another few weeks. It is making me feel completely crazy and just now am I realizing it could possibly be due to my birth control. Is there something about Sprintec birth control that could be causing my major mood swings?
Jane Harrison Hohner, RN, RNP responded:
Dear jess: Usually if a birth control pill (BCP) is going to worsen mood swings, such side effects tend to appear within the intial few months of use. You mentioned you had been using this brand of BCP for almost a year, so it seems less likely that the hormones in Sprintec are the sole culprit.

In my clinical experience, maybe 20% of women with PMS type mood symptoms will have such symptoms worsened by BCPs. Other medical conditions which might worsen "BCP bad moods" can include a history of depression or anxiety. Marked life stressors can also worsen mood swings.

Still, if the women is happy with BCPs as a method of birth control, a change in the brand or formulation of BCP is often tried.Each woman is so unique thatit is hard to define what BCP is going to be best for which women. Alas, when BCP research studies are done as part of the FDA approval process, effects on mood are not usually a major focus.

One last thought, if you you decide to see your GYN or clinic about the newly onset premenstrual mood problems they might recommend either Yaz or Yasmin as these BCPs have been studied specifically for premenstrual dysphoria (down moods).