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    Menopause and birth control
    bkridermom2 posted:
    I entered menopause this month(February) and was wondering how long should I keep using birth control? I'm afraid to stop..
    Lainey_WebMD_Staff responded:
    Hi Bkridermom2,

    Have you stopped your menstrual cycle? WebMD's Menopause Health Center is a great resource of information. Before you stop any medication please consult with your GYN.
    VetZ06 responded:
    At age 51 year ago my new GYN took me off birth control. I did not know the pill was faking my body into having periods each month along with migraine headaches due to hormonal spikes. I was placed on hormone replacement pills to keep hot flashes away and immediately stopped having monthly periods with migraines.
    chiajane responded:
    I was on birth control for years for pre-menopausal problems. I kept asking my doctor if I should stop them when I was about 55 and she said if I was still having periods I wasn't in menopause. I think she thought wrong, because when I was very ill at 58 I stopped taking them and never had another period and never had menopausal problems at all! I think that was a plus to get through with not even any problems...thank you birth control.
    theycallthewindmariah responded:
    Dear, you can't just say "I've entered menopause this month", because it simply doesn't work that way...
    Menopause is a very slow, gradual shutting down of a woman's reproductive organs, and it takes several YEARS. It doesn't just start all of a sudden unless you've had a hysterectomy or even just your ovaries removed.
    If you're SURE you aren't pregnant, and don't want to GET pregnant, you should definitely keep using birth control for at LEAST the next five years, or until your doctor/gynecologist says you don't need to any more.
    bkridermom2 replied to theycallthewindmariah's response:
    Thanks you! I am not using the pill but I never really l asked my doctor how long I had to keep using a birth control method. You just answered my question. I will keep using it at least till my next doctor visit next year, then see what he says. Thanks so much!
    perinatalfnp replied to theycallthewindmariah's response:
    The definition of menopause is that you are one year from your last menstrual period - so you only know you have entered it a year later. The process may take years, starting with irregular periods and other symptoms. Birth control pills can be very helpful with controlling symptoms, and if you go off them and never have another period, well, then you know it's happened. Talk to an MD or NP who works with women's health about symptoms, including irregular bleeding...

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    For more information, visit the North American Menopause Society website