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feminist wire | daily newsbriefs

December-05-11

Birth Control Commonly Used for Non Contraceptive Purposes

"Beyond Birth Control: The Overlooked Benefits of Oral Contraceptive Pills," a study conducted by Rachel Jones of the Guttmacher Institute, revealed that 14 percent of birth control pill users in the United States, or approximately 1.5 million women, take the pill exclusively for purposes other than preventing pregnancy. Moreover, 58 percent of birth control pill users take the pill, "at least in part," for purposes other than contraception.

Rachel Jones, the study's author, stated, "It is well established that oral contraceptives are essential health care because they prevent unintended pregnancies. This study shows that there are other important health reasons why oral contraceptives should be readily available to the millions of women who rely on them each year."

The study found that thirty-one percent of women on the pill used it to ease menstrual pain, 28 percent for menstrual regulation, and 14 percent for reducing acne. According to the study, "762,000 women who have never had sex use the pill, and they do so almost exclusively (99%) for noncontraceptive reasons."

Media Resources: Guttmacher Statement 11/15/11; Beyond Birth Control: The Overlooked Benefits of Oral Contraceptive Pills 11/11


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