Modern oral contraceptives are much safer than the forms used decades ago. In women under the age of 35 who don’t smoke, contraceptive use does not increase the risk of stroke. However, in a small proportion of women, oral contraceptives increase the risk of high blood pressure and blood clots. The risk is greater if you smoke, already have high blood pressure (especially if you are over the age of 35), have other risk factors for heart disease or stroke, or already have a blood clotting problem. Take The Heart Truth Quiz to learn more about your risk profile, and always consult your doctor.