Newer brands of birth control pills have been approved by the . Food and Drug Administration (like Seasonale) which allow women to have their "period" fewer times per year. Seasonale packs come with 84 active pills followed by a placebo week so the woman bleeds only four times per year. For more info, check out Extended-cycle birth control pills: Putting periods on hold in the Go Ask Alice! Sexual and Reproductive Health archive. If you're interested in using hormonal birth control, speak with your health care provider about which method would suit you best.
There is lots of ongoing debate about the breast cancer-depression link. For example, one study published in Cancer Research found a higher risk for breast cancer among women taking high-dose estrogen birth control pills. A review of 54 studies in 1996 found that women have a slightly higher risk of breast cancer while they’re taking birth control pills that contain both estrogen and progestin and during the 10 years after they stop taking the pills. And results from the 2010 Nurses’ Health Study found that use slightly increased risk, especially among women taking triphasic pills, which alter doses of hormones over three stages of the monthly cycle.