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Is is bad for my body to still be on birth control at 50?

Ask an expert series is a space for you to get answers to all your questions.  Have a question you’ve been wondering about? Ask here.

I will be turning 50 this year and I have been taking birth control since I was 16. Is this bad for my body for taking this so long? And is there a certain to stop?

This is a very important conversation to have with your provider. Again, the more important recommendation is one that is individualized to you. Typically, hormonal birth control is stopped around menopause or before (especially if you are on oral birth control), but your healthcare provider will want to consider your family and personal risk factors. There may be reasons why they’ve kept on your form of birth control until your current age. Just ask your prescriber.

There are some risk factors to consider for ongoing oral birth control. This recent article by Mayo Clinic provides a nice summary: