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I am on Orsythia birth control pills right now and during my last cycle I skipped my sugar pills to avoid having my period. I am approaching the next sugar pills but I am going on vacation and really don't want my period. Is it bad to skip my period twice in a row? I would only do it this time and not for a while after that. I just don't want to mess up my cycle completely or decrease the effectiveness of the pill. Thanks!

Hi K.,

Before I give my two cents, I want to say that many doctors will prescribe continuous-use birth control pills to adolescents (maybe you've heard of seasonique?). Also injectable, implantable and intrauterine methods of birth control are also frequently given to teens. These all cause changes to the monthly bleeding cycle.


I feel obligated to say that some people are nervous about teenage girls skipping their periods because most studies on extended-cycle birth control (taking sugar pills every 12 weeks) have only been done on women over the age of 18. This is why some health professionals don't endorse using birth control to suppress your periods, despite the fact that in women over 18 it's been shown to be a safe and legitimate way to control both your fertility and menstruation cycle.

So what's my opinion? I think you're fine to skip your period twice in a row. I believe that there is no medical reason why skipping your period would have harmful side effects and it will not make the pill less effective. My only concern is that if you were to become pregnant accidentally, you wouldn't have a missed period to clue you in - so make sure you are taking your bc at the same time, every single day. Also, sometimes skipping your period can increase your chances of having a little breakthrough bleeding so you may want to pack some light panty-liners just to be safe.

If not having regular periods is something that you're interested in, I would recommend talking to your doctor about options.

Good luck,


*note: my opinion is based on personal experience as well as several literature reviews, including: Gold M,Duffy K. Extended cycling or continuous use of hormonal contraceptives for female adolescents. Current Opinion in Obstetrics and Gynecology. 2009, 21:407411.  

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Julia Fout


I can answer questions pertaining to how to choose and acquire contraception, how to talk to parents, doctors and partners about birth control, emergency contraception, missed periods, breakthrough bleeding,and how to use all methods correctly.


I am working towards my Masters of Public Health with a concentration in Health Behaviors and Health Education. The advice I provide is based on the most recent scholarly research in the areas of health, adolescent development, sex education and the promotion of healthful sexual behaviors. I want to be able to provide teens with relevant, practical, fact-based information so they're well equipped to navigate tough choices and confusing situations.

ECU, the Brody School of Medicine, Department of Public Health

BA in Psychology/minor in Education
MPH Candidate

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