Is the pill yesterday’s method of contraception?

The Pill is known to have contributed to the death of over 553 years since it was first sold to the public

Even though more than 50 years have passed, the pill has barely changed. Can this be affecting millennials’ opinions on the so beloved contraceptive miracle? Francisca Silva reports.

According to the NHS, the number of women using the pill between 2005 and 2013 dropped by more than 13 percent. These numbers tend to include mainly millennials (born roughly between 1982 and 1999), but why do the numbers keep dropping?

As faithful internet users, it doesn’t take long to link the pill to its dangerous side effects like blood clots, depression or, worse case scenario, cancer. Only a few clicks away is the explanation for the symptoms women experience daily: heavy blood flow, drastic mood swings, weight gain and so on. As expected, along with the search for symptoms, it is a matter of tabs until someone falls into the trap of auto-diagnosing themselves.

Hannah Witton, a 25-year-old Youtuber known for her sex-positive channel, created the hormone diaries, a series where she describes her adventure on getting off the pill. She starts the first episode (uploaded on 9 August 2016) by taking her pill one last time, after taking it for 7 years non-stop. “I just want my body to do its thing,” she says.

On the course of these episodes, Hannah describes how not taking cerazette (the oral contraception she was put on since she was 17), was impacting her physical and mental health: “I was recently in LA and, one day, I was just like “Oh there’s the pain, it hurts again” and I just had this feeling of like ‘No, not again!’ and if this is how I am mentally and emotionally reacting to my cycle, then maybe I should stop them.” After coming to that realization, Hannah made the decision of getting the merina coil.

Maria João Soares, a doctor from Porto, explains: “Even though the pill is one of the cheapest and easiest methods of contraception, it has its inconveniences. The coil is cheap (can be inserted for free on an NHS clinic) and it lasts up to 10 years. There are two types of contraceptive coil: the IUS (intrauterine system), which is a small plastic device that slowly releases a hormone called progestogen, and the IUD (intrauterine device) which is made of copper and does not contain any hormones. The coil can also be an advantage when you don’t have to worry about taking it every day at the same time, and a lot of young women leading busy lives commonly forget to take their pill.”

Toby West, a Kings College medical student, adds: “The coil is an amazing device usually recommended to younger people with troubled lives and/or families. It is a great alternative to the pill, even though there might be some risks when inserting it, as it is advocated to women who have been pregnant before.”

Even if the pill continues to be someone’s oral contraceptive of choice, the seven-day break is, according to Professor John Guillebaud, still “outdated” and “should be consigned to history” since it had been made 60 years ago, and based “arbitrarily on the calendar, and not on science.”

The pill is now known to have contributed to the death of over 553 women and, if these numbers keep growing, it is believed that the number of young adults taking it will keep lowering.

Things will only get stranger from here

Strangers Things, the original Netflix show that left everyone craving for more, is now back after a long year of waiting and came just in time for Halloween.

After airing season two on October 27, the official reviews are just starting to come in and, so far, they seem to be promising.

In the first season, fans were left on a high end. They were promised an even bigger, better and stronger plot, creating a lot of hype. But were the producers able to live up to that hype?
According to Vox, yes, they were. “Season two is, in the grand tradition of sequels, even more than season one. Second seasons are often so good because those involved in them now know exactly how to write to their actors’ strengths. The same seems to be true for Stranger Things.” says Todd VanDerWerff, Vox‘s critic.

The visual effects tripled, three new characters were introduced but a lot of questions remain.
Is Chief Hopper mentally stable or even capable of decision making? The Verge seems to disagree. 
“It’s just one awful choice after another,” comments Tasha Robinson on her review, “including some really baffling and fatal ones.”

The Duffer Brothers add that the show “Is bigger in every aspect. It is more cinematic, more intense, and the characters are better developed.”
That can be proven as according to Nielsen, over 15.8 million people watched the series just within the first two days.

If just like me, you’ve already binged watched everything, you can still watch Beyond Stranger Things (which is also available on Netflix), where you can listen to the actors’ thoughts and even watch some behind the scenes of this season!







Artist: Laryssa Wannelle

Live show feedback

19 October 2017 | 1st show | Week 4

As for the first live show, I wasn’t given a specific role, however, I still had a VT to work on. I and my VT Team went to Waterloo Road to some get Vox Pops and interviews about the new Smart Strawberry Benches. We filmed for over 3 days and Emma edited everything in one afternoon. I did all the shots with my own camera and helped Nick getting people for the interviews.

As for the actual show, like I mentioned before, I wasn’t given a specific role so I just sat in the background doing some work. 
In my opinion, the show went really well. Everyone seemed to know what they were doing and that created a really professional and, at the same time, relaxed environment. Even though there were some technical difficulties, for the first time, it could have been worse.


26 October 2017 | 2nd show | Week 5

My team’s VT for this week was harder to get together. We covered Mayor Sadiq Khan’s new congestion charge, the T-Charge, and I can surely say it was a challenge to find drivers in London. Nevertheless, we managed to do it after a few hours of wondering around elephant and castle.

As for the live show, since the role rotations only happen every two weeks, just like last time, I wasn’t given a role. In spite of not being present (because I was feeling terribly sick), I still watched it. Things seemed to have gone much more smoothly than last week. The presenters were more relaxed and confident, and the quality of everyone’s VTs improved.

Once again, it wouldn’t be a live show without some unpredictable events. The microphone of the Bulletin presenter was on such a low volume that it was almost inaudible. Hopefully, the production team will overcome the volume problems in our next show.


9 November 2017 | 3rd show | Week 7

In comparison to the last two shows, this time, the production team outdid itself.
Leanne, as a director, did a wonderful job leading everyone, making sure we all knew when to come in action. Plus, both presenters were 100% comfortable in their position (and with each other), giving the whole show a pleasant atmosphere that was joyful to watch.

My role this week was of Bulletin Editor, meaning I had to work very closely with Remeka, the Bulletin Presenter. The pressure wasn’t as high as I was expecting. I had the simple job of writing down four relevant stories, get still images to match them and help Remeka with the script.

The only moment of panic I had was when breaking news came in, making me change one of the stories and get another image, as the current one wouldn’t be compatible anymore.
Nevertheless, I managed to do it just in time for the show to start.


16 November 2017 | 4th show | Week 8

This was, in my opinion, the best show we’ve had so far. All the packages were excellent, behind the scenes was stress-free and smooth, and the presenters were more confident than ever. This week really proved that practice makes perfect and, with time, our teams will only get better!

My role as bulletins’ editor felt easier this time since I had all the preparation I needed last Thursday. Plus, working with Remeka made my job a lot simpler and straightforward as she “decoded” the news I gave her and wrote the script with her own words.

As for my VT Team’s package, we were outnumbered this week, which made things relatively difficult. Ralitsa was ill so we had to decide on a new presenter. We didn’t have much choice since Emma was doing the written article and I was filming and editing, making Nick the only available option. Thankfully, it all went well, and Nick did a great job (especially with the outro).


30 November 2017 | 5th show | Week 10

This week I finally got to be productive and helpful during the live show. I was assigned the VFXs which got me quite scared at first, but I managed to accomplish the job’s requirements.
One of my tasks was to edit the opening and closing credits, although the closing required special attention as the music wasn’t long enough for the footage presented.

My VT this week is the worst one we have done so far. We had some last minute problems which left only me and Emma going out to film. With had to work with equipment we were not used to and that resulted in some lower quality image. However, Emma and I did the best we could under the circumstances and filmed our package. Nick also did the best he could in editing the few shots that were sent to him.

The presenters, Emma and Saf, looked calm but professional. Lastly, changing the background of the bulletins section would have been a great idea if it weren’t literally pointing at the production table.