Medical Q&As

Pill side effects

I have two questions both related to the oral contraceptive pill. Are headaches and nausea side effects of the pill? Is it possible to dispense with the 7-day break in taking the pill in order to avoid having a period while on holiday?

Nausea and headache are side effects of the pill and are related to the oestrogen component of the pill. Therefore the lower the level of oestrogen in the pill the lower the risk of these particular effects. These effects may occur in the early weeks of commencing the pill for the first time and usually subside. Occasionally it may be necessary to change your brand of pill if symptoms persist. In answer to your second question you can indeed dispense with seven day break because you are going on holidays. This is a safe and common practice.