WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- A disturbing post that showed a chart enumerating “natural birth control” options had recently gone viral getting thousands of shares and likes.
- Fortunately, many have pinpointed that the posted options are actually dangerous because its ingredients are not yet scientifically examined and proven to be safe and effective.
- However, what makes the tweet even more alarming is due to its inclusion of a known poison called pennyroyal, which has caused deaths over the years and a long list of health problems including kidney and liver damage.
Out there in the wilds of the Internet are a lot of bad advice about birth control. People might even tell you on YouTube that drinking garlic milk prevents pregnancy. Of course, this is absolutely untrue for not only does garlic make birth control pills less effective, but it also makes your breath so revolting.
Recently though, some alarming “natural birth control options” that was posted by one Twitter user had gone viral with thousands of shares and likes.
While there were those who trust the post at face value, these are still a lot of skeptics out there who stressed that these “options” are not effective and may even prove dangerous to people because its ingredients are not clinically tested or scientifically proven to prevent pregnancy.
OB-GYN Nathaniel DeNicola told BuzzFeed News that it’s hardly even worth diving into it because it’s so unsupported by science or medicine.
But the absurdity of the advice is not the worst part of the tweet, rather, its inclusion of pennroyal (Mentha pulegium).
Pennroyal is often prescribed alongside other herbs to prevent pregnancy by boiling 8 ounces of distilled or spring water. Despite this, the plant stimulates menstrual flow and helps promotes self-abortion. Other health problems include serious damages to the kidney, liver, and nervous system as well as nausea, stomach pain, high blood pressure, lung failure, brain damage, and vomiting.
Particularly alarming is that the post does not include any information about measurements which causes the reader to speculate on what boiling “8 ounces of distilled or spring water” can possibly mean.
Through the years, the plant had been responsible for a number of deaths such as one healthy 18-year-old who consumed 28 grams of pure pennyroyal oil in her attempt to induce abortion. Another is a 23-year-old who tried to induce menstruation died after swallowing a tablespoon of the plant.
Eventually, the tweet was taken down after it was reported several times under the “encourages self-harm” category.
All things considered, it is best not to heed contraception advice from an Internet chart especially one that includes a known poison. If you need something that works, try condoms or any other available and scientifically proven (and safe) birth control measures instead.
Source: IFL Science