When Contraceptives Change Monthly Bleeding: How family planning providers and programs can help clients choose and use suitable methods

Monthly bleeding changes are common with hormonal family planning methods and IUDs. They are rarely harmful, and they do not signify underlying or impending illness. These family planning methods also are the most effective reversible methods, and many women choose them for their effectiveness. Nonetheless, many women are concerned when a contraceptive method changes monthly bleeding. In fact, bleeding changes make up women’s most commonly reported method-related reason -- and sometimes the most common reason overall -- for discontinuing hormonal methods and IUDs. Addressing bleeding changes may be the most important way that family planning providers can help users of these methods choose and use suitable methods. This issue of Population Reports can help family planning providers inform and counsel clients about possible bleeding changes with these methods so that they can choose methods that suit them and know what to expect. Being aware of bleeding changes ahead of time helps women avoid unnecessary worry and increases women’s satisfaction with their chosen method.  

Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health,Center for Communication Programs,INFO Project