MS and periods, any advice?

Hi, I’ve noticed that my MS is being affected by my period worse and worse every month and starting to really interfere with my life (as if MS isn’t doing that enough already!). The only advice I can find on the MS Society website is to go on the pill but the last couple of times I’ve tried that it’s sent me on an emotional rollercoaster of epic proportions.

I wondered if anyone on here has any ideas to lessen the blow each month please? The worst symptom is increased spasms, I do take clonazepam at night but only at the weekend because otherwise I’m too groggy on a weekday.

Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated!

Many thanks

Becky x

Hi Becky,

Have you tried more than one type of oral contraceptive? Because they’re not all the same.

Because of my age (late 40s) I’m only allowed the mini-pill, but although I didn’t have the same problems as you, the first one didn’t suit me.

I kept having breakthrough bleeding, which is obviously a concern, if you can’t be absolutely sure it’s your pill. And I’m sure that, occasionally, I ovulated and had a full natural cycle - despite being on the pill! Imagine the consequences if I’d been relying on it for contraception, instead of just to control monthly flare-ups of MS symptoms! Obviously not a reliable method, if it just randomly fails every few months.

So I switched to a different one, and I’ve no longer been getting the unscheduled bleeds, nor the occasional month when my body seemingly decides to ignore the pill altogether.

I don’t know if a similar switch would work for mood problems too, and perhaps, after two bad experiences, you are unwilling to try. But I just think it might be worth experimenting to see if you can find one that suits.

Having settled on one I’m OK with, I’ve found it greatly improves quality of life. I probably won’t need to be on it much longer, because that side of things must be drawing to a close soon, anyway. But I was down to a three-week cycle, and my periods were lasting a full week, too, so only two decent weeks before I was back to the whole symptom flare-up thing. I’ve now got the OK to run two courses of the mini-pill back-to-back, so I can go a full eight weeks between periods. That’s such an improvement on three!



Have you thought about the Mirena coil? The hormones in it suppress menstruation but they do it without going through your digestive system, so you get the effect with much lower levels of hormone. Probably only an option if you’ve already had a child.