For women with high blood pressure, methods with estrogen–the pill (except for the mini-pill), the ring, and the patch–may make their blood pressure even higher, increasing the risk of a heart attack or stroke. Fortunately there are lots of highly effective birth control options that are safe and estrogen-free like the IUD, the implant, or the shot. Talk to your doctor about your condition and what birth control is best for you.
Most women who use hormonal birth control–the pill, the ring, the shot, the patch, the implant, or a hormonal IUD–will have less painful periods than those who don’t. This is because these methods of birth control make the lining of the uterus thinner. There’s less tissue in the uterus to shed, so periods are lighter. One special note on the implant and the shot: for some women, these methods cause more days of spotting or bleeding, but periods become lighter and less painful overall.
Spotting, which can happen with a bunch of different methods, doesn’t make you lose that much blood, even though it might seem like it. We have a Provider Perspective article about it if you want to learn more.
Not every method of birth control is safe to use right after giving birth, but many of them are. Breastfeeding consistently can be its own form of birth control, or there are a bunch of other methods you can use, including super-effective methods like the IUD and the implant. If you feel like this will be your last bundle of joy, sterilization is also an option. (P.S. Sterilization could also be an option for your partner!)