Antidepressants - Birth Control Pills

Is it safe to take antidepressants and birth control pills at the same time? Women worry that mixing antidepressant with the birth control pill might make the pill ineffective.

Generally, concomitant use of birth control pills and antidepressants does not affect the safety or efficacy of either medicine [1].

Minor interaction: Estrogens may decrease the metabolism of tricyclic antidepressants, while increasing TCA plasma concentration.

Moderate interaction: St. John's wort may increase the breakdown of estrogen and has been associated with breakthrough bleeding when taken together with oral contraceptives [2]. Although the interaction has not been proven conclusively, it is wise to use a backup method of contraception.


  • 1. Koke SC, Brown EB, Miner CM. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2002 Sep;187(3):551-5. PubMed
  • 2. Murphy PA, Kern SE, Stanczyk FZ, Westhoff CL. Contraception. 2005 Jun;71(6):402-8.

By HealthyStock Research Group, March 2012
Medical resources reviewed: August 2018

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