By Vilma Martinez
Birth control pills will be over the counter?! When I first heard the news, I thought that was crazy, but apparently it is true. Oregon and California have recently changed their laws and are making the pill available over the counter, without a prescription from a doctor.
I understand that this might not concern people in Philadelphia, but eventually it will. . I say this because now that laws are changing, it won’t be long until oral contraceptives (the official name for birth control pills) become over the counter all throughout the U.S. Many women are involved in sexual activity and it is only a matter of time until everyone realizes that measure such as making oral contraceptives over the counter, is something that needs to be done for the benefit of all women alike.
This development is especially important for teenagers because up to 16% of teens are sexually active by the time they are 15 , 48% when 16 and 17, 61% when 18, and 71% when 19. It is important for teens who want to prevent pregnancy to know this information because they might realize the risks in avoiding birth control. Pregnancy is a serious topic and many teens alike find the idea of it horrifying. Taking oral contraceptives are probably one of the most comfortable ways of birth control for teen girls.
Believe it or not the U.S all together is one of 45 different countries where contraceptives are legal, but are not available OTC. Many other countries either offer them or do not have them at all. U.S needs this push because women need the medical attention when they need it without questions asked, but I also see where they are coming from.
When taking the pill you are exposing yourself to many health problems, such as migraines and high blood pressure. Though there are more severe problems. You have increased risks of cervical and breast cancer, heart attacks, and strokes. You also have a chance of developing Gallbladder Disease, liver tumors, and infertility. This list goes on, which is why they are taking their time on making the pill over the counter.
Birth control pills cost up to $600 a year when a woman does not have insurance to cover it. So what about those women who need the pill? Why should they lose a leg or an arm in order to obtain birth control? I think that the U.S is doing good by making moves like this. Which leaves me with the question of how long will it take for this to be spread throughout the entire U.S? And will the U.S continue to make smart moves like these?