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Women typically take Natazia to prevent pregnancy. This prescription birth control pill is a combined hormonal contraceptive, meaning it contains both an estrogen and a progestin. It works by stopping ovulation, altering the cervical mucus, and changing the lining of the uterus. There are also several off-label uses of Natazia, such as treating acne and premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD).
What Is Natazia Used For?
It is important to note that Natazia has not been studied in women who have a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or greater (click BMI Calculator to determine your body mass index). Like many other birth control pills, Natazia might not be as effective in obese women.
There are a variety of different birth control options available today. Each particular method has its own advantages and disadvantages, and no one birth control method is right for all women. Some of the most commonly used birth control methods include:
- Progestin-only contraceptives -- some birth control pills ("mini-pills"), injections, and implants
- Combined hormonal contraceptives (which contain a progestin and an estrogen) -- most birth control pills, patches, and rings
- Periodic abstinence, sometimes known as natural family planning or the rhythm method -- avoiding intercourse during the fertile phase of your menstrual cycle
- Withdrawal -- removing the penis from the vagina prior to ejaculation
- Barrier contraceptives -- condoms, diaphragms, cervical caps, and various other methods that physically block the sperm from entering the uterus
- Spermicides -- foams, jellies, gels, suppositories, and inserts
- Intrauterine devices (IUDs) -- implanted devices that are both very effective and reversible
- Surgical sterilization -- tubal ligation (getting your "tubes tied") or a vasectomy (for men).
Some methods of birth control fall into more than one category. For instance, the Today® sponge works as both a barrier contraceptive and a spermicide. Natazia falls into the category of combined hormonal contraceptive, as it contains both an estrogen (estradiol valerate) and a progestin (dienogest). Some of the benefits of combined hormonal contraceptives include:
- An effective and relatively easy-to-use form of birth control
- Lighter menstrual bleeding
- Regular menstrual cycles
- Less menstrual pain
- A decreased risk of ovarian or endometrial cancer (cancer of the lining of the uterus).
Because it causes lighter menstrual bleeding, Natazia is also approved to treat heavy monthly periods, when there is not a diagnosed condition of the uterus causing the heavy bleeding. An example of a diagnosed condition that may cause heavy periods is uterine fibroids.
However, combined hormonal contraceptives may increase the risk of blood clots and other problems, and not all women should take them (see Natazia Warnings and Precautions for more information). As with almost all methods of birth control, combined hormonal contraceptives must be used correctly and consistently.
Importantly, Natazia does not protect against HIV or other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). In many situations, it is advisable to use condoms in addition to Natazia to prevent transmission of STDs.