Myth of menstruation: How menstrual regulation and suppression impact contraceptive choice
Objective: This study examined the attitudes and perceptions of reproductive-aged women on contraceptive methods, and the extent to which menstrual regulation and suppression influenced contraceptive choice.
Methods: Data were collected using a mixed-methods approach, including 6 focus groups (n=61), 18 individual interviews, and a web-based survey (n=547).
Results: Resulting themes included 1) lack of knowledge and familiarity as a barrier to LARC use; 2) the notion of menstrual control in OCPs versus LARC methods; 3) the benefits of menstrual regulation and suppression though LARC methods; and 4) the myth of menstruation—the influence of withdrawal bleeding associated with OCPs. Participants believed menstruation and withdrawal bleeding were healthy and reassuring, and often confused the two.
Discussion: Women today believe menstruating every month is natural and healthy; however, from an evolutionary perspective, this recurrent menstruation is actually unnecessary and potentially harmful to women’s health. Findings suggest women need more information about menstrual regulation and suppression before selecting a contraceptive method.
Learning Areas:Clinical medicine applied in public health
Public health or related research
Describe the impact of menstruation on a woman’s contraceptive choice Identify reasons menstrual suppression may be beneficial for women
Keyword(s): Contraception, Reproductive Health
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been a member of the Womenâs Health Research Team at the College of Charleston for a year. I have helped in the collection of data and the development of ideology for a larger study with the Women's Health Research Team as well as the research and development of this study.
Any relevant financial relationships? No
I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.