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March 4, 2002

Other Medications

Question from Arkansas, USA:

I am an 18 year old female who has had type 1 diabetes for about 12 years now, and I was wondering about birth control pills. If I started to take birth control pills, would I have any complications because of taking them? Do you think it is wise to take them?


From: DTeam Staff

The new low dose estrogen birth control pills available for the past ten years or so are very safe and not usually causing any problems for those with diabetes. You should consider using oral contraception if you are sexually active (and also use condoms since condoms are the only ways to help decrease sexually transmitted diseases).

Oral contraception is also helpful for some cases of severe acne or for menstrual cramping or irregular periods for lots of reasons. You should discuss this with your diabetes team since they may help you do some extra blood glucose monitoring when you start such treatment to be sure that you do not need any insulin dose adjustments. In our experience, this is not usually the case, but every person responds a bit differently so you can find your own pattern with more blood glucose detective work.