New study reveals potential link between oral contraceptives and riskier behaviors in women
11/13/2023 // Laura Harris // Views

A new study has revealed a potential link between oral contraceptive (OC) use and alterations in the brain structure of women that may influence emotions, anxiety, fear, decision-making and impulse control.

The study, published in the journal Frontiers in Endocrinology, examined 139 women aged 23 to 35 who were either currently using OC, had stopped taking them or had never used them, along with 41 men for comparison. The research found that those on OC had thinner regions in their frontal lobe compared to those who had never taken or had stopped.

According to Alexandra Brouillard, the lead author and researcher at the Université du Québec à Montréal, the thinning in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex, a brain region associated with emotion regulation, suggests that women taking OCs might experience lower inhibitions, take more risks and exhibit reduced fear responses.

The researchers used MRIs to analyze gray matter volume and cortical thickness in brain regions associated with information processing, emotion regulation, memory retention and decision-making. The research found that women generally have more gray matter in parts of the brain linked to learning and self-control than men.

However, women currently using OCs experience thinning in the brain region responsible for processing risk and fear. This reduction in thickness may lead to issues in self-control, social behavior and impulsiveness, potentially affecting the amygdala, which is responsible for regulating emotions. (Related: Birth control pills can raise the risk of depression by up to 80%.)

Despite this, Brouillard warned against making direct connections between these brain changes and riskier behaviors, stressing the need for further investigation into potential behavioral implications.

"The objective of our work is not to counter the use of COCs, but it is important to be aware that the pill can have an effect on the brain. Our aim is to increase scientific interest in women’s health and raise awareness about the early prescription of COCs and brain development, a highly unknown topic," explained Brouillard.

Hidden dangers of birth control pills doctors won't tell you

In a blog post written by certified wellness health coach, nutritional consultant and detox specialist Sarah Ding for her website, she discussed the hidden dangers of birth control pills that doctors don't want their patients to know.

Ding wrote that contrary to the popular belief that birth control pills are inherently safe, the reality is quite different.

"Many women take birth control pills without being aware of the serious health implications of these pills. Doctors prescribe pills to young ladies from the age of 16, some to help them regulate their menstruation, and reduce pre-menstruation symptoms, acne, and other hormonal problems. Often there is no question about their lifestyle and diet, much less the underlying reasons why these young ladies have this problem in the first place!"

Birth control pills come with a range of side effects that are often downplayed during medical consultations, with the only obligatory check being a blood pressure measurement.

Despite the convenience they offer in preventing pregnancy, immediate side effects akin to those experienced during pregnancy, such as weight gain, breast tenderness, mood swings, nausea and a decrease in libido, can catch many women off guard.

However, these initial effects are just the tip of the iceberg.

Long-term use of contraceptives has been linked to a myriad of more serious side effects, including yeast overgrowth and infection, irregular bleeding, missed periods, elevated blood pressure, spotting between periods, no ovulation, fluid retention and lower bone density.

Shockingly, the list extends to potentially severe conditions like an increased risk of liver and gallbladder diseases and the development of liver tumors and gallstones.

Ding also shared how she suffered from the adverse effects of these contraceptives. "I wish my doctor had told me about the dangers of birth control pills when I started taking them decades ago. Until today, I still suffer from the damage that birth control pills have caused to my liver."

Learn more about the adverse side effects of contraceptives at

Watch the video below to learn more about the dangerous side effects of birth control.

This video is from the Tammy Cuthbert Garcia channel on

More related stories:

Birth control pills found to increase the likelihood of ischemic stroke in women.

Birth control vaccine that may leave women permanently sterile now in clinical trials.

Canadian government to spend $4.3M on abortions and birth control to manage indigenous populations.

FDA approves first OTC birth control pill in the U.S. despite concerns about data on its proper use.

Washington state spends millions of taxpayer dollars buying three-year supply of abortion pills.

Sources include:

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