'''Oral [[contraceptives]]''' are chemicals taken by mouth to inhibit normal fertility. All act on the [[hormone|hormonal]] system. Female oral contraceptives have been on the market since the early [[1960s]], and enjoy great popularity. It is used by millions of women around the world, though the acceptance varies by region: approximately one-third of sexually active women in the [[United Kingdom]], but much less in countries such as [[Japan]]. [[Male pill|Male oral contraceptive]]s remain a subject of research and development, and are not widely available to the public.
Female oral contraceptives, colloquially known as ''the Pill'', are the most common form of pharmaceutical [[contraception]]. They are used to prevent [[pregnancy]]. The pill can also be used to control [[dysfunctional bleeding]] or symptoms of [[polycystic ovary syndrome]]. They consist of a pill that women take daily and that contains doses of synthetic hormones (always a [[progestin]] and most often also an [[estrogen]]). In some types of pill the doses of hormones are adjusted to be in synchrony with the [[menstrual cycle]] (two- or three-phase pills), while others keep a constant level of the hormones.
Mechanism of action==
The Pill works by preventing [[ovulation]], as well as making the [[uterus]] less likely to accept implantation of an embryo if one is created, and thickens the mucus in the [[cervix]] making it more difficult for sperm to reach any egg.