Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science

Degree Level



Biological Sciences


Makhanova, Anastasia

Committee Member/Reader

Walker, Kate

Committee Member/Second Reader

Lessner, Faith

Committee Member/Third Reader

Jones, Linda


Hormonal contraceptives are widely used due to their efficiency in preventing pregnancy. Although women are often informed of the physical effects of hormonal contraceptives, there is little emphasis on mental effects, such as increased rates of depression and changes in social perception. The current study examined perceptions of social stress among women before beginning hormonal contraceptives, and two months after using hormonal contraceptives. I hypothesized that women would experience increased social stress after beginning hormonal contraceptives, compared to a control group of women who were also assessed twice. Results did not support this hypothesis; there was no difference in interpersonal stress scores between Time 1 and Time 2 in either group of women. Notably, the sample size was very small and further research is needed to examine the mental effects of hormonal contraceptives to help women become better informed about their reproductive decisions.


Contraception, hormonal contraception, pregnancy prevention, mental health, depression, social perception