After trawling through the medical records of more than a
million girls and women,
the researchers found women taking the combined
contraceptive pill were 23% more likely to be prescribed
antidepressants than those not on hormonal contraception.
Women or teenagers on progestin-only pills were even more
likely (34%) to be treated for depression.
Adolescent girls taking the contraceptive pill were at the
highest risk (1.8 times more likely than their peers) but as
women aged, the link weakened, the research revealed.
“We don’t want women to panic and stop using their normal type
of contraception over this study because we can’t draw
conclusions about causation,” Family Planning NSW medical
director Dr Deborah Bateson told BuzzFeed News.
“There is no evidence for a causal link between depression and
contraception, but women experiencing mood swings should
certainly see their doctor because there are always other
contraceptives they could be using, for example,
long acting reversible contraceptives.”