I realize the general concern that the hormones in an oral contraceptive (birth control pill) can reduce milk supply, and that many breastfeeding moms thus choose other methods of birth control. However, I have had severe menstrual cramps and also severe pain at the time of ovulation in the past - this seemed to be not bad right after delivery but seems to have worsened with time (my periods started again when my daughter was about 4 months old, probably because she slept 6 hour stretches at night then even though we were exclusively BF'ing).
She is now 2.5 years old, and I need to do something about the pain rather than just take ibuprofen or other anti-inflammatories (I end up needing to take medication for stomach side effects as well thanks to the anti-inflammatories). Oral contraceptives have been great for this in the past (less menstrual cramps, not ovulating thus no ovulation pain). RE: nursing, at the moment I'm getting to the point where I would be happy to be done, but I don't think my daughter is near that point yet. So, if there was a small reduction in my milk supply (which I'm not convinced is a great supply at this time anyway, particularly at the time of my periods I think it's quite low) that led to a gradual weaning I would be ok with that - but I'm just concerned that starting on a oral contraceptive would cause more of a drastic and dramatic reduction in milk supply such that my daughter would be stressed and wonder what was happening.
so, my question is, has anyone had any experience with going on an oral contraceptive with a 2 year old or older nursling, and what was the effect on your milk supply (ie. drastic reduction, didn't notice any change at all, or somewhere in between)? Was there significant changes in your child's nursing pattern as a result?
Thanks for any and all replies :-)
(have been reading/lurking for a while but first post)