How does Cilest work?                                                                          

Combined Contraceptive Pill »

Cilest works like the majority of other contraceptive pills. Its main aim is to stop pregnancy and it does this in a variety of ways. It contains two hormones that are usually found in your body and control the menstrual cycle. These hormones are called oestrogen and progestogen. By taking the pill, you are changing the levels of the hormones in your body throughout the cycle, which has certain effects on the body.

Its main effect is that it can prevent an egg from being released during ovulation. Once a month, your egg matures in the follicles in your ovaries and when there is a sudden change in hormones, it is stimulated to mature and it is released.  This process is called ovulation. The pill makes your body think that you have already ovulated during this cycle and as your body is programmed to release one egg a month, no more eggs will be released. This is a very effective way of preventing pregnancy, as there is no egg in the fallopian tube for the sperm to fertilise.

Another part of your cycle consists of thickening your uterus wall, ready for fertilization. When an egg becomes fertilised, it needs to implant into the uterus wall in order to grow. Therefore, every month, your uterus wall becomes thicker, making the best possible environment for the fertilised egg to attach to. However, the pill can stop this lining from thickening so it is much thinner and much more difficult for an egg to attach.

The final mechanism by which Cilest works is the thickening of the mucous lining. Every vagina is protected by mucous fluid in order to keep the area clean and protect it from some infection. The pill increases the thickness of this vaginal fluid, so much so that the sperm find it very difficult to swim through and would not reach the fallopian tube in the first place. The pill may reduce the risk of pelvic inflammatory disease via this mechanism but it will not protect you from any sexually transmitted infections.  

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