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» Got Questions? Get Answers. » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Sex Basics and Sexual Health » Withdrawal bleed question!

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Author Topic: Withdrawal bleed question!
WorriedGirl11
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Okay. So I had to take pills from a new pack (I had to take extras in the last one) and took 1, then to get to the full 21 days I should've taken 2 more. Since I run packs, though, I'd taken like 63 days already, so I decided to take a break for 3 days. It's been 3 days since and the bleeding hasn't stopped! It's gotten lighter, but it isn't going away. I continued the pack I had already taken one from (as I run packs I'll just start a new one straight after this and I'll be on it for more than 21 days, so protection isn't the issue here). Is this pack still effective? I'm on Yasmin, by the way.
And how long should I expect this to last? Going to the beach with the girls on Monday and really want it gone by then (It'll have been 8 days on Monday). It's gotten to the point where my emotions are on overload- I'm crying and sooo frustrated it won't go away.

Any help would be reaaaally appreciated. Could I treat it as if I accidentally skipped 3 pills and double up for 3 days to catch up? Thanks!

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WorriedGirl11
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Oh also, just as an extra- I really don't want it to last much longer also cause I'm anaemic- it's been causing bad, bad cramps, my blood pressure is insanely low and I'm seeing stars and my vision's pretty screwed.

So please. Need any advice I can get!

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Heather
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So, first things first, make sure you're taking the iron supplement you use for your anemia, okay?

Really, we couldn't possibly say how long this will go on. This stuff is unpredictable in the first place, but all the more so when you skip placebo periods.

However, so long as you didn't skip any active pills or shorten active pill periods -- rather than placebo periods -- your pill should still be just as effective. But if you stopped in the middle of an active pill cycle, then no, you should not rely on your pill for birth control until you start a whole new pack and have taken pills for at least seven days.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Heather
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(And just for future reference, if you are going to use the pill to suppress periods, you CANNOT just stop and start whenever. If you're going to take packs back to back, you have to take the whole next pack. And you can only take a break from pills when it's time for placebo pills. Doing it any other way means you can't rely on your pill to prevent pregnancy.)

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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WorriedGirl11
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I stopped 2 days before the end of a pack because I was missing two pills. I figured it was okay because I take 21 day pills and run them- so I was over the 21 day count for them being fully effective. I'd already taken 4 packs back to back and had lots of spotting so I just let myself have the break 2 days early (I spose that'd be like.. 79 pills in a row. Yikes!) Would those 2 days I didn't take from the last pack (the 4th in a row) affect my protection?

I'm taking my iron and vit. c as per usual. It's just really ineffective during my period- I took it all year last year and still fainted in class when I took breaks.
Anyway, with Yasmin you just take a 7 day break but after asking a doctor (telling her I had outrageous spotting making me ill) she said I could stop, take a 3 day break, and start again. I'm just hopeful it's gone soon- I'm in so much pain!

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WorriedGirl11
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Thanks for the quick reply by the way!

And I stopped taking them Sunday- Monday it started properly and it's really lessened today, so maybe it's going away. I restarted taking them Wednesday.

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Heather
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I'm not sure I understand what you mean by being over the number of days ion one pack meaning your pill must still be effective. But if you shorten the active period of any pack, even if you took full packs before without a break, you risk losing effectiveness. When it comes to pill effectiveness, you need to think of this per pack.

So again, yes, if you skipped any active pills in a given pack, that can compromise effectiveness.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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WorriedGirl11
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So it'd compromise effectiveness for the next while then? Not for any time before that? (As in, barrier method for the next 7 days)?
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Robin Lee
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If your current pack is commpromised in terms of the way you take it, then yes, it is considered less effective now and for a little while into the future, not for anything that happened while you were taking a previous pack.

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Robin

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WorriedGirl11
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Okay, that's fine then. I just wondered because I had sex (and used the pull out method) last week- the Wednesday night- and took the last pill I had from the last pack on Thursday (I was 3 pills short as I'd been sick and had to take those 3 other days) then I took two more from a new pack, and forgot to take the remaining 2 extra ones. So it's just for the next 7 days or so? I've taken it for 4 days now, so I should use a barrier method for the next 3 or so? I usually do, I'll just be extra careful from now on.
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