Wonky cycles after stopping BCP. Experiences/Advice?

posted 2 years ago in TTC
Post # 2
Member
9731 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: City, State

I’ve heard here on the bee it can take up to six months for your cycles to regulate. 

I was very lucky in that my cycle stayed the same when I came of BC but it had also been very predictable when I went on BC. Were your cycles irregular before going on BC?

Post # 3
Member
279 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

Do you remember what your cycles were like before? It seems everyone has a different experience but you should generally expect your cycles to return to what they were like before BCP within a few months/cycles. That means if you had super long cycles before the pill you’d probably go right back to that. I think the pill only ‘regulates’ you while on it, it won’t fix any underlying issues. I was on the pill for two spans of time, the first time I went off my first cycle seemed long for me (35 ish days) but then it went back to what I recall being ‘normal’. Right now I’m on my 4th cycle off the second time and the first cycle was 30 days and the next two have actually been what I feel like is a short 27 days. I remember them being more around 30 but it’s possible I always thought they were supposed to be 28 days and just remember all the ones that were 30 days because they seemed ‘wrong’ back then. I wish I had my old records lol. Good luck and I hope things get regular for you!

Post # 5
Member
9812 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2013

sassybeee :  I didn’t necessarily think it was 3 months, but more like 3 cycles or so.   I went on BCP at 13 for very crazy cycles and heavy periods and somehow my body had regulated itself over time because once I went off at 29 I’ve had regular cycles. I would give it another 3 months and then perhaps contact your OB. Good luck!

Post # 7
Member
76 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: May 2018

sassybeee :  Hey! I was in the same boat 6 months ago – had no idea what to expect after coming off the pill. It really helped to chart at that time. My periods ranged from 22 days to 40 days right away, but I was irregular before the pill anyway so that’s normal.

Anyway, charting is awesome. It’ll tell you if you’re ovulating and the length of your luteal phases, for instance, so even if your periods are irregular, you can rest assured that you’re still releasing an egg and such. Good luck!

Post # 8
Member
2636 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: December 2016

I came off BCP at the end of May and my cycle was all over the place afterwards. It was pretty regular at around 30 days prior to going on BCP, too. My first cycle off BCP was 41 days, my second was 31 days, my third was 37 days and my fourth was set to be around 43 days (that was the cycle I got pregnant). My GP told me that it can take 6 months+ for your cycles to regulate themselves, particularly if you’ve been on BCP for a long time (I was on it for around 8 or 9 years). She said if my cycles were still all over the place after 6 months to come back and see her.

I’d give it another few months/cycles to see what your body is doing and if it’s still not more regular then go back to see your GP.

Post # 9
Member
12 posts
Newbee

You’re so smart to have gone off BC ahead of time!

I went off BC last New Year’s. I started temping that first month to see if I would ovulate or not (some women don’t ovulate their first cycle off of birth control). It didn’t look like I ovulated, but I didn’t get my period, either. I went to the doctor after 3 months and she wanted to wait until I didn’t have a period for 6 months to give me something to start it. It took almost 5 months to get my period!

I kept temping and then started using OPKs. I would ovulate anywhere from 25 days to 35 days and my cycle would be anywhere from 35 days long to 45+ (averaging around 40). After 4 cycles, I realized I had a very short luteal phase (the time after ovulation but before I get my period). It was 7-9 days long (usually 8). To tell you how bad this is: it’s difficult to get pregnant with a luteal phase less than 12 days long, and practically impossible if it’s less than 10 days long. In October I got a BFP at 9 dpo and almost immediately got my period. I went to an OBGYN who found a cyst the size of a golf ball on my right ovary. She did some tests, including an MRI (a month later) that showed it shrunk, wasn’t cancer, and was too small to operate on. I got referred to a fertility clinic. Every test you can think of has come back normal (haven’t had a progesterone test- which I suspect is my issue, caused by the cyst) and I should be able to start meds to have a REAL shot at TTC after this (40+ day) cycle ends. After New Year’s 2018.

You should look into charting. Your cycle issues could be caused by BC or by something that BC was masking. I’d recommend reading Taking Charge of Your Fertility. This podcast: fertilityfriday.com has a lot of episodes about ttc after birth control, also.

Good luck!

Post # 10
Member
626 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2017

I had my IUD removed July 29 of this year and have had 4 periods thus far. My longest cycles were 38/37 days and they seem to be shortening, last one was 33 days, this next one might be 32 days. Either way, looking back, I wish I had it removed earlier. We got married at the beginning of July and wanted to TTC right away. I underestimated how much time my body needed to regulate.  So kudos to you for stopping BC well in advance, and with charting, taking your temp, occasional OPK if your up to it, you’ll surely gain a lot of knowledge on your cycle. Best of luck and keep us posted!

Post # 11
Member
14925 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

I only took BC for 2 years and when I stopped first cycle was about 95, 45, then 97 days, before setting on my normal of about 35-45.

Post # 12
Member
560 posts
Busy bee

You are not alone most women face this problem after coming off BCP. When I stopped BCP it took me 45 days or so for AF. Technically the documentation says that cycles should resume immediately after you stop taking synthetic hormones. I disagree, because IMO and after talking to people, some can take upto a whole year to get a period.

Also a big problem with BCP is that it tends to mask pre-existing conditions like PCOS. Women take BCP for years only to get off when they are TTC to find out that they have untreated PCOS or other conditions.

I wish you well and I hope your GP visit will provide some answers.

Post # 13
Member
30 posts
Newbee

According to my tracking app, I stopped the pill 51 days ago and I still haven’t seen AF (just withdrawl bleeding a few days after stopping the pill).

I’m frustrated because we wanted and expected to get pregnant right away, and I had a TON of pregnancy symptoms that turned out to be really bad symptoms from stopping the pill.

My cycle was normal and very regular before I started taking the pill, but I was on it for six years and I used the continuous method for three years (which I’m suspecting might be the cause of my messed up/nonexistent cycle).

We were hoping to get pregnant right away and tell our families for Christmas and now all of our friends are also trying..it’s going to be frustrating seeing everyone pregnant around us if it takes a while.

Have you been using OPKs or temping to see if you’re ovulating? I haven’t ovulated yet, but I’m hoping once I start getting AF I will, even if my cycles are long or irregular for a few more months.

Post # 14
Member
564 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2018

Mine took until 4 months after but almost the entire time i could feel it ‘coming’. Id been on BC for 9 yrs. Maybe check with your dr just in case. 

Post # 15
Member
38 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: June 2017

sassybeee :  it took my cycle about 6 months to regulate. We were NTNP at that point. Once we actively started TTC I got pregnant on my third cycle 

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