I’m a doctor – here are the contraceptives most likely to make your breasts bigger

CHOOSING contraception can be difficult with so many potential side effects to consider for each.

While many are uncomfortable, such as B. moodiness or bleeding, you may not feel as down about larger breasts.

Contraception comes in many forms, with some side effects being more common with one than the other


Contraception comes in many forms, with some side effects being more common with one than the otherPhoto credit: Getty

Two of the most commonly reported side effects of all birth control pills are tender breasts and enlarged breasts, according to The Lowdown — an online birth control review site.

Your breasts are more likely to swell on hormonal birth control, experts say, with the combined pill being the most important.

Hormonal birth control pills work by releasing the hormones that change the body’s chemistry to prevent pregnancy.

These hormones act in the same way as the body’s natural hormones, which the breast tissue can respond to.

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dr Becky Mawson, clinical director at The Lowdown, said changes in breast tissue are not permanent.

She said: “Any hormonal methods can cause the breasts to change and become heavier, fuller, lumpier or uncomfortable.

“This usually occurs when you first start using a hormonal contraceptive and usually wears off after a few months.

“This is more likely if you’re someone who experiences breast pain or discomfort during your usual monthly hormonal cycle, as your breasts may be more sensitive to changes in female hormones.”

dr Mawson said breast tissue is “very sensitive to female hormones, which are found in hormonal birth control.”

“Adding extra hormones into your body, even the very small amounts involved in birth control, can cause changes in breast tissue,” she said.

The main offenders

The Lowdown says when breasts enlarge, it’s due to water retention triggered by the hormones.

Estrogen is known to cause fluid retention, while progestin is believed to have the opposite effect.

Therefore, contraceptives that only contain progestin are less likely to fill the breast than those that combine estrogen and progestin.

The pill, patch, and vaginal ring combination releases both estrogen and progestin doses.

However, progestin-only contraceptives include the Nexplanon implant and progestin injections (Depo Provera and Sayana Press).

The progestogen-only mini pill includes Micronor, Noriday, Norgeston, Cerazette, Aizea, Cerelle, and Feanolla.

The implant (IUS) contains only progestin.

Progestin-only birth control is associated with an increased chance of developing small cysts in the breast, said Dr. mawson

These are harmless but should be checked out by your medical team.

dr Mawson added: “The risk of breast cancer in people under 40 is very rare, but if you find a breast lump we always recommend having it checked at your GP’s office.

“Get used to how your chest feels so you can notice changes over time.”

Non-hormonal contraceptives include the copper coil intrauterine device (IUD), which releases copper into the uterus, diaphragms, and condoms.

You are unlikely to see any change in breasts or weight with these methods compared to the hormonal methods.

weighty topic

Besides changing breasts, weight gain is another physical change you may experience while using birth control.

dr Mawson said: “In my experience, all hormonal methods can potentially lead to changes in weight and body composition.

“Contraceptive hormones can cause you to become bloated and retain fluid, you may also feel hungrier, which can lead to higher calorie intake.”

dr Mawson said that regardless of your birth control choice, there are many reasons for weight gain, including throughout a woman’s life.

She said: “Weight gain from hormonal birth control is a common concern people have and it can be confusing to understand.

“All women gain weight naturally throughout their reproductive lives, regardless of birth control methods.

“Research on weight and prevention is limited, and there are few studies that specifically look at weight as a side effect.

“Studies have shown that while people gained weight with all methods, it was statistically no different than people not using birth control.

“The exception to this was birth control shots, significant weight gain is more likely if your BMI is above 30 at the start of use.”

dr Mawson advises every woman using birth control to monitor her weight for the first six months.

If they gain more than 5 percent of their weight, you should consider other birth control methods.

She added, “At The Lowdown we have a blog about weight and birth control.” I’m a doctor – here are the contraceptives most likely to make your breasts bigger

Sarah Y. Kim

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