Emergency contraception

Providing pregnancy prevention after unprotected sex.

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A short-term method of contraception.

Emergency contraception pills help to prevent a pregnancy when taken up to five days after unprotected sex.

They work by preventing or delaying the release of an egg from the ovaries. A very popular type of emergency contraception involves taking one or two tablets of a particular hormone. This is sometimes called ‘the morning after pill’ or ‘Plan B’.

An intrauterine device (IUD) can also be used as emergency contraception as it can prevent a fertilised egg from settling in the womb.

Frequently asked questions about emergency contraception

Emergency contraception offers the following advantages as a short-term method of contraception:

– It is safe for almost all women

– Using emergency contraception does not affect long term fertility

– It does not cause an abortion

– You can use emergency contraception at any time in your menstrual cycle

-Emergency contraception is not harmful to your health.

When deciding if emergency contraception is a method right for you, here are a few quick facts you should consider:

-It will only work for sex that occurred in the previous five days
-It is not recommended as a regular method of contraception
-Unlike condoms, it does not protect you from sexually transmitted infections (STIs)
-It may have some side effects, such as bleeding, nausea and fatigue.

Emergency contraceptives can interfere with other medications. Depending which brand of emergency contraception you use, there is a small risk it may affect the following medication:

-St John’s Wort herbal medicine
-Various epilepsy medicines
-Various HIV medicines
-Various tuberculosis (TB) medicines
-Antacid medicines

Why not get an STI test while visiting a clinic?

Something you should consider along with our condom service is an STI test to ensure your body is safe before you try this contraception method.

Find your best fit

If you’re unsure what method is best for you, take our online contraception quiz.