Selecting a birth control pill from a variety of options can be a challenging task. There are different types of birth control pills, such as monophasic and multiphasic. Many women prefer monophasic pills as they are more convenient to take.

However, even monophasic pills come in multiple options. How can one decide which is the best option for them? To make this decision better, we will compare two monophasic birth control pills Marvelon and Alesse.

Let’s dive in!

Marvelon and Alesse

Marvelon and Alesse are progestin and estrogen combination contraceptive pills. When taken as advised by the doctor and without missing any dose, the pills are effective in 98% – 99% of cases. 

According to CDC, the use failure rate for Marvelon and Alesse is 7% if one may miss or not take it properly.

Doctors in Canada commonly advise these prescription oral contraceptive pills to prevent pregnancy, regulate the menstrual cycle, or adjust heavy blood flow.

How Do Marvelon and Alesse Work?

Marvelon and Alesse: When taken as directed, both Alesse and  Marvelon prevent pregnancy by:

  • Preventing ovulation (release of the egg) during the menstrual cycle.
  • Making your vaginal fluid thicker to prevent sperm from reaching the egg.
  • Altering the uterine lining, preventing attachment of the fertilized egg.
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They may also help you regularize periods, treat acne and decrease blood loss during periods. 

How many tablets are in Marvelon?

Marvelon comes as a 21-day pill. One needs to take pills for 21 consecutive days followed by 7 days where there is no need to take Marvelon.

How to take Marvelon?

Marvelon comes as a pack of 21 pills, one pill to be taken daily for 21 consecutive days, followed by a break of 7 days. 

How to take Alesse?

Alesse comes as a pack with either 21 or 28 tablets. The pack with 21 pills contains only active pills, while the 28 pill packet comes with 21 active pills and seven placebo pills. 

For Alesse 21, one pill is to be taken daily for 21 consecutive days, followed by a break of 7 days. 

For Alesse 28,  take the medication pill for 21 days, followed by a reminder pill for seven days. 

Here are certain directions for taking this medicine:

  • Take the pill once daily as directed by your doctor, preferably at the same time every day.
  • Follow the directions as mentioned on the Patient Information Leaflet
  • Use a backup contraceptive method such as condoms in case of diarrhea and vomiting.
  • One can take the pill at bedtime or after the evening meal, especially if you face nausea or an upset stomach with the medication.
  • It is essential to take this pill at the same time every day, 24 hours apart.

How else are Marvelon and Alesse similar?

As mentioned before, both Marvelon and Alesse pills include synthetic versions of the hormones estrogen and progestin, which means these hormones are manufactured in laboratories. 

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Another similarity between Marvelon and Alesse is that both medications are considered low-dose contraceptives. 

The term low dose contraceptive often refers to pills containing less than 0.05mg dose.  This is because the amount of estrogen in various combination pills varies. Since Marvelon contains 0.03 mg and Alesse 0.02 mg of estrogen, they are considered low-dose contraceptives.  

Benefits of Marvelon and Alesse

As combination pills, both Marvelon and Alesse can potentially help with:

  • Regulates menstrual periods
  • Minimizes blood loss 
  • Lighter shorter periods
  • Less painful periods
  • Acne management
  • Decreased risk of ovarian cysts, ovarian cancer, and endometrial cancer

Lower estrogen in a contraceptive pill increases the risk of spotting. So, if a woman has breakthrough spotting on Alesse, she can shift on Marvelon as it has a higher estrogen dose. However, it is best to switch the contraceptive pills after consulting the doctor.

Similarly, both Marvelon and Alesse have a similar side effects profile, including the following:

  • Acne
  • Abdominal bloating or cramping
  • Breast pain, swelling, or tenderness
  • Dizziness
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Heartburn
  • Headaches
  • Weight loss or gain
  • Painful menstrual cramps
  • Back pain
  • Fatigue

Contact a doctor or medical professional if you experience any of the following serious side effects:

  • Mood changes (depression)
  • Breast lumps
  • Severe stomach pain
  • Continuous spotting, sudden heavy bleeding
  • Dark coloured urine

How Do I Get Marvelon and Alesse?

Oral contraceptive pills are available only through a prescription from a registered physician in Canada. So, one needs to consult a doctor to get either of the birth control pills. The doctor will take a medical history. They will also inquire if you are taking any medicines or supplements.

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These medicines may be contraindicated in some women, such as those with a history of smoking or a family history of breast cancer. So, your doctor will prescribe them based on your condition.

You can reach out to PocketPills and speak to us about how we can help make using birth control an easier experience.

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