Summary: A look at taking antidepressants while taking birth control.
Tags: anti-depressants safety, birth control, birth control pills, antidepressant medication
By the very nature of the function they perform, anti-depressants are extremely powerful drugs. Just like birth control, which is interfering with the human body's reproductive system, anti-depressants are engineered to rewire the circuitry of the human brain. Another part of the problem is that there are a great many different permutations of birth control pill and anti-depressant combinations. Because of this, women should always consult their doctors before adding one, or the other, to their daily medication intake.
Lower Sex Drive
A potentially more palpable risk for women who combine the birth control pill and anti-depressants is an end result that goes against the very reason they are taking the former in the first place. Several recent studies have linked a lower female sex drive to one or both of these medications, meaning that a woman able to have sex without fear of getting pregnant might lose her desire to do so. Additionally, both the U.S. birth control and anti-depressant medication industries are large, multi-billion dollar per year enterprises, which underpins the effort or lack thereof of manufacturers to properly examine all possible twin scenario risks.
If Taking an Anti-Depressant Your Doctor May Want You On Birth Control
Since there is always a chance that a woman on birth control can still become pregnant, there is high risk in the scenario of taking anti-depressants while on birth control. In 2010, a growing number of civil lawsuits claimed that the anti-depressant Paxil led to severe birth defects. Attorneys for the plaintiffs also point to 2005 findings by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA); the monitoring agency wanted severe birth defect warnings to be added to the labeling of Paxil after research showed a doubled risk of birth defects developing among children during the first trimester. Specifically, these children were found to more commonly be afflicted with holes in the walls of their heart, also known as atrial and ventricular septal defects.