by Stephanie Drahan, Outreach Associate,
National Women's Law Center

If you follow us on Twitter, you’ll start to see us posting a lot of facts on the birth control pill this month. As you may know, Sunday was the 50th Anniversary of the Food and Drug Administration’s approval of the birth control pill, and in recognition, we will be sharing some facts about the Pill throughout May. Please help us commemorate the anniversary by helping us compile a list of 50 ways the Pill has revolutionized women’s lives and by educating your friends, families, colleagues and social networks by passing along these facts:

• The pill helps prevent acne, ectopic pregnancy, anemia, PMS symptoms & some gynecological cancers (Source: ARHP)

• If birth control pills are always used correctly, less than 1 out of 100 women using them will get pregnant each year (Source: ARHP)

• Birth control pills do not protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs) (Source: ARHP)

• The pill can reduce menstrual cramps and make periods lighter (Source: Planned Parenthood

• In 1873, Congress passed a law banning birth control information as obscene (Source: Time Magazine)

• Margaret Sanger coined the term “birth control” and started the first family planning clinic in Brooklyn, New York in 1916 (Source: Women’s History)

• In 1964, eight states still prohibited the sale of contraceptives
(Source: PBS)

• In 1964, the dissemination of information about birth control in Massachusetts and Connecticut was illegal (Source: PBS)

• Just five years after the Pill’s FDA approval, more than 6.5 million American women were taking oral contraceptives (Source: PBS)

• In 1965, the Pill is the most popular form of birth control in the U.S.
(Source: PBS)

• In 1965, the Supreme Court ruled in Griswold vs. Connecticut that married women could buy contraceptives  (Source: PBS)

• The 1972, Supreme Court decision Eisenstadt v. Baird allowed single women in Massachusetts to buy contraceptives (Source: PBS)

• John Rock, co-inventor of the Pill believed it would be “the greatest aid ever discovered to the happiness and security of individual families — indeed, to mankind”

• The Pill is used by an estimated 12 million women in the U.S. and 100 million women worldwide
(Source: WebMD)

• There are over 21 brand-name varieties of the pill
(Source: WebMD)

• Combination pills combine estrogen and progestin, preventing the monthly release of egg cells from the ovary (Source: eMedicineHealth)

• Most forms of birth control pills can also be used as emergency contraception
(Source: Not-2-Late)

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