Seasonique: Usage, Dose, and Side Effects

Seasonique is a birth control medication that allows women to have a 12 month cycle instead of the standard 28 day cycle. Learn the dose and usage tips.

Seasonique contains a collection of female hormones that prevent the body from ovulating. This can also be used to alter the uterine or cervical mucus so that sperm will have difficulty reaching an egg to fertilize. This will also prevent the egg from attaching properly to the uterine wall. This medication is typically prescribed to help prevent pregnancy, but it may also be used for other purposes such as regulating the menstrual cycle.

Precautions Before Taking the Medication

Those who may be pregnant or have recently given birth should not take it. Anyone suffering from high blood pressure, heart disease, circulation problems, blood clotting disorders, vaginal bleeding, trouble with the eyes or kidneys resulting from diabetes, liver disorders, or migraines may be prevented from taking this drug. If you are over the age of 35 and smoke or if you have suffered from uterine or breast cancer you should avoid using birth control products. Anyone who has previously used birth control and suffered jaundice, stroke or heart attack as a result should not use it.

How to Take Seasonique

This drug should be taken exactly as prescribed. In most cases, you will take your first pill on the Sunday after your period begins or the first day of your period. Your doctor will specify which schedule is most appropriate for you. You will need to use back up birth control for up to two weeks until the medication has had time to take effect. The pills are given in 12 week doses. You will take one pill around the same time every day until the packet runs out. These packets include 84 medicated pills and 7 reminder pills. You should experience your period while taking the reminder pills, which will limit you to a 12 week cycle instead of the typical 28 day cycle.

What to Do when Missing a Dose and Overdosing

If you miss one of the active pills, take it as soon as you remember; then follow your regular dosing schedule for the remainder of the pack. If you miss a remainder pill, throw it away and continue your regular medication cycle the following day.

If you miss two active pills in a row, take one extra pill the next day and continue your normal medication cycle. If you miss three pills in a row, do not make up the missed pills. Instead, continue the pack as scheduled, leaving the missed pills behind. You may experience vaginal bleeding if you have missed several pills in a row, which signals that you have started your period. You will also need to use backup birth control for at least seven days after missing two or more pills. If you do not have a period following a cycle where you have missed two or more pills, you may be pregnant.

If you suddenly develop vaginal bleeding, nausea or vomiting while taking the drug, you may be experiencing an overdose. Contact emergency medical services or a poison control hotline to get help as quickly as possible. Be ready to tell these medical professionals the amount you have taken and when so they can accurately evaluate your condition.

Side Effects of Taking Seasonique

Common side effects include breast tenderness, nipple discharge or swelling. You may experience changes in the side effects associated with your menstrual periods or a decreased sex drive. The facial skin may become darker as you use the medication. You may notice increased hair growth around the body or loss of hair on the scalp. You may also notice that you begin to have trouble wearing your contact lenses. It is common to develop vaginal discharge or itching. Patients also frequently report changes in appetite or weight. These can be accompanied by mild nausea, particularly when you first take the medication. This can include bloating, vomiting or stomach cramps. These side effects are not dangerous and will typically lessen as you continue to take your medication.

Let your doctor know if your use leads to worsening or severe headaches that affect your balance, vision or speech. You may develop a cough or wheeze, which can cause you to cough up blood in severe cases. You may notice pain or swelling in the legs, angles, feet or hands. Symptoms of depression may appear and you may develop lumps in the breast. Talk to your doctor about whether or not it is safe to continue using Seasonique if any of these side effects occur.

If you suddenly develop weakness on one side of the body or severe chest pain that is accompanied by pain in the shoulder, sweating and nausea, contact emergency medical services immediately. Stop taking it if these side effects occur.



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