An After-Sex Birth Control Pill: Too Political for 2013 (Seriously?)

birth control pill politics photo

The FDA approved the first birth control pills for women over 50 years ago. Soon after, 1 million women were taking birth control pills and today over 80 percent of women will take them sometime during their reproductive cycle.

Birth control pills have changed the face of a women’s career, given women a voice, and controlled the population, but according to a recent study in the Journal of Family Planning and Reproductive Health, modernizing birth control pills may still be too political for 2013. In this day and age are we still putting conservative politics before science? Seriously?!

Politics play a major role in the number of choices for better birth control, including the monthly birth control pill. It’s a hurdle that scientists have been forced to deal with as they seek safer and more effective methods. In a recent paper, health experts urged scientists to study methods of birth control after sex, or beyond the 72 hour pill that’s already available. Currently, birth control pill methods are designed to work by keeping sperm and egg separate, but they can also be effective after the egg is fertilized.

“A woman could potentially use a post-fertilization method on a planned schedule only once in each menstrual cycle, no matter how many prior coital acts she had had in that cycle,” wrote the authors, reported on Inquisitr.

Political opposition has delayed the development of such an after-sex birth control pill from reaching the market, however.

“Every day in clinical practice, at least one woman tells me she has discontinued use of hormonal contraception because ‘the pill makes me go crazy!'” Dr. Ellen Wiebe, a clinician and professor of reproductive health at University of British Columbia in Vancouver, who was not involved with the editorial, told LiveScience.

The ease of taking a monthly birth control pill is also a big plus for new research.

According to Bustle, “The problem, of course, is the politicians will likely jump to designate the scientifically feasible potential method as abortion.”

For many, the time for practical, non-political advancements are long overdue. We should be limited to the birth control pill that represented the only option for our mothers and grandmothers. It’s not the job of government to stand in the way of lifesaving contraceptives that allow women to make their own decisions about family planning. To deny us the best and safest that science has to offer, only continues to put women at risk.

Related on EcoSalon:
Dirty, Sexy Pill: A History of Birth Control 
Is Pulling Out a Safe Method of Birth Control?
How Green is the Birth Control Pill?

Image: M.Markus