Women can stop their periods by taking hormonal contraceptives, according to WeMD. Medicines launched in 2003, such as Seasonale, let women have periods only four times per year. In 2007, the FDA approved Lybrel, an oral contraceptive that touts no periods at all or just one annual period due to strong hormonal contraceptives. WebMD states Lybrel may cause breakthrough bleeding and spotting when used as directed.
The Association of Reproductive Health Professionals explains that the most common way for women to suppress periods is with monophasic combined oral contraceptives. These pills are taken with extended use or continuous use methods. As many as 53 percent of women using Lybrel for 12 months completely eliminated their periods in a safe manner.
Menstrual suppression lets women eliminate medical conditions brought about by monthly cycles. Bleeding, elevated hormone levels and ovulation cycles are all changed by hormonal contraceptives. The ARHP states that suppressing menstruation reduces or eliminates symptoms associated with perimenopause and menopause.
Nonmenstrual benefits of period suppression include relief of breast tenderness, bloating, migraines, acne and endometriosis. Contraceptives are effective for women who go on vacation or who engage in frequent athletic activities.
Normal oral contraceptives are taken for 21 days and then seven days of placebo pills. The National Women's Health Network indicates Seasonale has 84 days of hormone pills and then seven days of placebos, whereas Lybrel features slightly lower hormone doses per pill with continuous doses.