Every day pills (Combined Oral Contraceptives)

They are Pills that contain low doses of 2 hormones – a progestin and an estrogen – like the natural hormones progesterone and estrogen that are found in a woman’s body. They come in a 21 or 28 pill pack, depending on the type. Examples: Chaguo lako, Femiplan, Microgynon, Nordette How do they work?
Mainly by preventing the release of eggs from a woman’s ovaries (ovulation), but the eggs stay healthy inside the body until the woman is ready to get pregnant. The pills must be taken every day and whether or not the woman has sex.
One must start a new pack of pills on time even if she is still menstruating, and it is important to take the pills at the same time every day because some side effects may be reduced and it can help the woman remember to take her pills consistently.
Are they effective?
If taken correctly and consistently, the chances of becoming pregnant when using everyday pills are less than 1 pregnancy per 100 women (less than 1%).
• Nearly 100% effective when used correctly.
• No delay in getting pregnant after discontinuation
• Can be started without blood tests, pelvic exam, cancer screening or breast examination.
• Can be stopped at any time without a health provider’s help.
• Can help to protect against some cancers, ovarian cysts and iron deficiency anemia
• Can reduce cramps, bleeding problems, excess hair on face or body, among other problems
Common side effects / limitations:
• Changes in bleeding patterns e.g. irregular bleeding, spotting, or no monthly bleeding.
• Headaches, nausea & dizziness.
• Acne (can improve or worsen, but usually improves)
• Breast tenderness.
• Weight or mood changes
• Do not protect from STIs including HIV / AIDs
Everyday pills DO NOT:
• Build up in a woman’s body, the pills dissolve in the body each day
• Make a woman infertile
• Cause birth defects or multiple births
• Change a woman’s sexual behavior
• Disrupt an existing pregnancy – they cannot cause an abortion