top of page

Can birth control pills cause Hypothalamic Amenorrhea?

Can birth control pills cause Hypothalamic Amenorrhea?

You have been put on birth control pills to “fix” your period? You have been on birth control pills and are now wondering if them caused your period to go missing? Can birth control pills cause Hypothalamic Amenorrhea? All these questions will be addressed in this blog post.

Hypothalamic Amenorrhea (HA) is a condition characterized by the absence of menstrual periods in women of reproductive age due to disruptions in the hypothalamus-pituitary-ovarian axis, often caused by factors such as excessive exercise, restrictive eating behaviors, and high levels of stress. So can birth control pills cause Hypothalamic Amenorrhea? Or can they be used to treat it? The short answer to both of these questions is no. Lets take a deeper look.

Birth control pills cause an artificial bleed

The "withdrawal bleeding" that occurs during the placebo or hormone-free week of combination birth control pill use is not a true menstrual period. It's often referred to as "fake" or "artificial" bleeding. The fake bleeding that occurs is a result of the hormonal changes that mimic a menstrual period. It is not a true period associated with ovulation and fertility, but rather a response to the temporary withdrawal of hormones (estrogen and progestin).

Birth control pills mask Hypothalamic Amenorrhea

Birth control pills can mask the symptoms of Hypothalamic Amenorrhea (HA) by providing a regular withdrawal bleeding (often referred to as a "period") even when the underlying hormonal and reproductive system isn't functioning normally. The artificial bleeding can make it appear as though the reproductive system is functioning, even if the underlying issues causing Hypothalamic Amenorrhea are still present.

It is not normal that it takes 6 months for your period to return after you go off birth control pills

Your body wants to ovulate. So if you go off the pill you should expect the return of your period within the next few weeks. If you don’t get your period back after being on the birth control pill it's because you (still) have Hypothalamic Amenorrhea. You don't have Hypothalamic Amenorrhea because you were on the pill.

Birth control pills cannot jump-start your period

While birth control pills can mask the symptoms of Hypothalamic Amenorrhea (HA), they don't address the underlying issues. Once you stop taking the pills, if the underlying factors causing HA are still present, your menstrual cycle will not resume. Hence, birth control pills cannot be used to somehow magically jump-start your period.

Birth control pills are not protecting your bones

Some studies suggest that birth control pills could have a mild positive effect on bone density in young women. However, their impact on bone health is generally not as significant as other treatments specifically designed for bone loss prevention. If you are seeking for ways to improve your bone health the best thing you can do is to work towards Hypothalamic Amenorrhea (HA) recovery. Another option could be to use Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) at the same time as you work towards restoring your period. HRT can help maintain bone density by providing the body with estrogen, which plays a crucial role in bone health.

Can birth control pills cause Hypothalamic Amenorrhea?

So, can birth control pills cause Hypothalamic Amenorrhea? No they can´t! Also they cannot protect the breakdown of bone mass. What they will do is to mask your Hypothalamic Amenorrhea, and thereby potentially delay your recovery.

Further Reading

*All content is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the guidance of your doctor or other qualified health professional with any questions you may have regarding your health or a medical condition.



You don't have to go through Hypothalamic Amenorrhea 
Recovery alone

If you're missing your period due to under-fueling, over exercising and/or stress I am here to help you heal. I have deep knowledge that I combine with an actionable approach. I would be thrilled to help you recover your period, and thereby fertility, regardless of if it has been missing for a few months or several years.

Let the posts
come to you.

Thanks for submitting!

  • Instagram
Mother and Baby

to regain your period in 8 weeks

bottom of page