Low-Dose Birth Control: Effectiveness, Risks, and Side Effects


“Hey, have you heard about low dose birth control pills?” Sarah asked her friend Emily. “No, what are they?” Emily replied.

Sarah explained, “They’re a type of contraceptive that uses lower amounts of hormones to prevent pregnancy. They have less estrogen and progestin than regular pills, which means fewer side effects like nausea and mood swings. They work by stopping the release of an egg, thickening the cervical mucus to block sperm, and thinning the uterus lining. They’re really effective if you take them right and can even help regulate your periods and reduce cramps.

Low dose birth control pills have made a way easier for women providing easier ways to prevent pregnancy.Many women are being suggested and following these low birth control pills because they offer a reliable way and comfortable method as an option to today’s women.

low dose birth control

In This Article:


What Is The Low Birth Control Pill?

Birth control pills have become inline for preventing pregnancy in the US since they were approved by the U.S . fOOD& Drug administration(FDA) in 1960.As the name suggests, Low-dose birth control pills contain smaller amounts of estrogen and progestin hormones than regular birth control pills. They are made to prevent pregnancy effectively while minimizing the side effects that can come with higher doses of hormones. The mini pill contains 35 micrograms of progesterone and no estrogen.They are effective,readily accessible and inexpensive

What Are The Types Of Low-Dose Birth Control?

  • Combination Pills: These include both estrogen and progestin. The estrogen, typically ethinyl estradiol, is in lower doses of 20-35 micrograms compared to standard pills. The wide variety of combination pills depend on how often you want to have periods and the dose of hormones that is best for you. Combination birth control pills are categorized according to the dose of hormones in the active pills 
  • Monophasic Pills: Every pill in the pack has the same amount of hormones.
  • Multiphasic Pills: The hormone levels change throughout the cycle to more closely align with the body’s natural hormone changes.
  • Minipill: This pill contains only progestin. The mini pill doesn’t offer as many choices. In each pack of pills, they contain the same amount of progestin.

Who Should Go For Low Estrogen Pills?

Low estrogen pills can be a good choice for:

  • Women who experience side effects from higher estrogen doses, like nausea or headaches.
  • Those who are sensitive to hormones and want to reduce their overall hormone intake.
  • Women are at risk for blood clots, as lower estrogen levels can reduce this risk.
  • Those who want effective birth control with fewer hormonal side effects.

How Does Low-Dose Birth Control Work?

Combination birth control pills prevent your ovaries from releasing an egg. They also slow an egg’s progress through the fallopian tubes, thicken cervical mucus and thin the lining of the uterus (endometrium). All of these actions help keep sperm from joining the egg.


The mini pill slows an egg’s progress through the fallopian tubes, thickens cervical mucus and thins the endometrium — all of which help prevent sperm from reaching the egg. The minipill sometimes also suppresses ovulation.

Low-dose birth control pills prevent pregnancy by:

  •  Stopping ovulation, so no egg is released for fertilization.
  •  Thickening cervical mucus, making it harder for sperm to reach the egg.
  • Thinning the uterine lining, reducing the likelihood of implantation if an egg is fertilized.

How Does Low-Dose Birth Control Affect Your Period?

Any type of hormonal birth control will have some effect on the menstrual cycle.Low-dose birth control can affect your period by:

  • Making periods lighter and shorter.
  • Reducing menstrual cramps.
  • Regulating the menstrual cycle, making periods more predictable.
  • Sometimes causing spotting or breakthrough bleeding between periods.
  • Pain in bladder or abdominal 

What Are The Advantages Of Low-Dose Birth Control Pills?

Low-dose birth control pills offer several benefits:

  • Fewer side effects compared to higher-dose pills.
  •  Effective in preventing pregnancy.
  •  Can help regulate menstrual cycles.
  •  May reduce menstrual cramps and make periods lighter.
  •  Lower risk of hormone-related issues like blood clots.

What Are The Side Effects Of Low-Dose Birth Control Pills?

Even with low-dose birth control pills, some side effects may occur:

  • Spotting or breakthrough bleeding between periods.
  • Nausea.
  • Breast tenderness.
  • Headaches.
  • Mood changes.

What Are The Alternatives For Low-Dose Birth Control?

There are several other options for birth control besides low-dose pills:

  • Regular Birth Control Pills: Contain higher doses of hormones.
  • Progestin-Only Pills: Suitable for those who can’t take estrogen.
  • IUDs (Intrauterine Devices): Long-term, low-maintenance option.
  • Contraceptive Implants: Small rods placed under the skin that release hormones.
  • Contraceptive Patches: Worn on the skin and changed weekly.

To conclude with the facts, birth control pills has many effects on the body which are common.side effects vary from individual to individual,each person reacts differently to each pill.if the side effects are getting adverse, try to maintain daily life in systematic way, it is best to talk to a healthcare provider about trying a different brand of a method of contraception.


  • healthline.com
  • Medical news today
  • Better health.gov.in