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  • Writer's pictureMartha Lewis

5 Ways Birth Control Sabotages Your Sleep

I’m going to be blunt: the “pill” and other forms of birth control destroy your sleep and your health.

Here’s how:

  1. The pill works by suppressing natural estrogen and progesterone to post-menopausal levels so you can’t get pregnant. It causes you to have a fake period because ovulation doesn’t happen. Both low estrogen and progesterone can cause sleep issues so it’s not surprising that a survey found that “contraceptive users reported more frequent sleep complaints…increased excessive daytime sleepiness and more insomnia symptoms.” The fake estrogen from the pill is stored in your body and is 4 times stronger than the natural estrogen your body is supposed to produce. This can cause estrogen dominance (when estrogen is higher than progesterone) which can cause insomnia as well as depression, anxiety, PMS, cysts, and more.

  2. The pill also depletes your body of important nutrients for sleep, especially magnesium, vitamin B6 and zinc. It causes your minerals to become imbalanced such as high calcium and low magnesium, a pattern I see in many of my female clients with sleep issues.

  3. The copper IUD isn’t safe either. The copper IUD, hormonal IUD and hormonal birth control all cause copper toxicity. Copper is a necessary mineral but it can build up in the body and become toxic. Copper accumulates in the liver and the brain and can lead to mental symptoms like anxiety and depression as well as sleep disturbances. Most of my female clients (including myself) are also copper toxic and this is contributing to their insomnia. Birth control causes copper toxicity because the excess estrogen makes your body retain copper. The synthetic progesterone in the pill doesn’t have a true progesterone effect that’s supposed to keep copper levels in check. So copper easily builds up over time.

  4. The unnatural estrogen in birth control can lead to liver problems. Your liver is supposed to metabolize hormones and when there are too many, it becomes overburdened. This affects your liver’s ability to get rid of toxins in the body, too. The liver is most active at night and so all the toxins it can’t handle circulate around causing inflammation which wakes you up.

  5. The pill and other birth control also affect your gut health. They deplete the good bacteria in your gut and promote candida overgrowth. You need a healthy gut to sleep well and the pill definitely destroys the gut!

If you’re on birth control, it’s ruining your health and your sleep.

If you’re on birth control for symptoms of hormone imbalance such as irregular periods, heavy bleeding and cramping, PMS, etc., birth control is not solving the problem. It’s not addressing why your hormones are out of balance. It’s making things worse.

And the only healthy forms of birth control are condoms and knowing your cycle so you know when you won’t get pregnant. I know these aren’t as convenient as popping a pill or getting an IUD but your health is worth it!

The first step to sleeping better is to get off birth control. The next step is to work with me so I can find why your hormones are out of balance and help you get them back in balance so you can sleep normally and feel great, even during your period.

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