Women take pills, injections and suppositories to stop their menstrual cycles for a number of different reasons. Some chose to use menstrual suppression for vacations, or special occasions such as weddings and honeymoons. They are also used to correct medical problems such as iron-deficiency from heavy menstrual periods, painful premenstrual syndrome (PMS) or to even sustain a pregnancy. There are many FDA-approved medications to stop menstruation.
In May of 2007, the Food and Drug Administration approved Lybrel as the first birth control pill used to suppress menstruation. Lybrel is a hormonal medication designed to be taken daily to eliminate menstrual periods. According to Wyeth spokeswoman Amy Marren, this pill is the only one designed to be used 365 days a year in order to completely suppress menstruation. In a study conducted involving 2,400 women, Lybrel showed it's just as effective in this as it is as a form of birth control, although the FDA adds that some women experience breakthrough bleeding. Also, with Lybrel there are no placebo pills as there are with traditional birth control pills, the pill is taken seven days a week, delivering the same hormones daily.
Depo-Provera injections are used once every three months to prevent pregnancy. The injections release a steady stream of testosterone without estrogen. Although this injection is used solely for birth control, side effects include absence of the menstrual cycle. According to familydoctor.org, women who use Depo-Provera may notice a change in their menses, either being lighter or heavier, but after a year of use 50 percent of users will experience a total lack of menses while still using it. Depo-Provera must be administered by a physician and maintained every 12 weeks with a routine appointment.
Yaz is a 28-pill monthly birth control pack that is FDA approved to prevent pregnancy and PMDD (premenstrual dysphoric disorder). The benefit to the Yaz pill aside from the above listed is the convenience of having a shorter and lighter period. According to Yaz's website, this lighter, shorter period can help to not only reduce the amount of menstrual blood loss, but also to decrease the occurrence of iron-deficient anemia as a result of it. One pill is taken per day for 24 days (these are called active pills), and then an additional pill is taken for the remaining four days (these pills are inactive).
Seasonique is a three-month pack of oral contraceptives that allow you to only have four periods a year. This is what Seasonique calls a "pill period." During a regular monthly period an egg is formed and released from the ovaries to await conception. Simultaneously, the uterine wall builds up in anticipation of cushioning the fertilized egg. When conception is not achieved, the egg breaks down along with the uterine wall and is shed as a period. With Seasonique, you have no menstrual period, but after each three-month supply is taken, you must take the remaining week of low-dose estrogen pills. This low dose of synthetic estrogen sparks a "pill period."
Progesterone is taken as an oil-based injection, vaginal suppository or as a pill. Progesterone is mostly prescribed as part of a fertility regiment to stop bleeding or to sustain a pregnancy in its early stages. For the later, the woman is prescribed the physician's preferred form of progesterone and given a specific dosage to keep the walls of the uterus from contracting and breaking apart since the estrogen levels may start to return to normal after the course of prescribed fertility medications have been discontinued. The usage of progesterone to prevent miscarriage however is still controversial.