Dr. Beena Jeysingh, Obstetrician and Gynaecologist, Motherhood hospital, Bangalore India, speaks about emergency contraceptive pills, and what needs to be done in case a woman has had unprotected sex.
Emergency contraceptive pills are used to prevent unwanted pregnancy within 72 hours of sexual intercourse. It is also known as “morning-after pills.” It should be taken as soon as possible so as to have maximum effectiveness. If there is already an established pregnancy, it will not work and neither it would harm the foetus. It should not be assumed as “abortion pills”.
Emergency contraception can be used in certain situations:
- Unprotected intercourse
- Condom failure
- Missed birth control pills
- Forced sexual contact
“It is always advisable to consult a doctor in case someone is concerned about an unwanted pregnancy after a sexual contact. Your doctor is the best person to rule out any medical contradiction for emergency contraceptive pills. You might experience vaginal bleeding within a week’s time after consuming emergency contraceptive pills. A missed period calls for a medical checkup and pregnancy test as these emergency contraceptive pills are not 100 % effective”, warns Dr. Beena Jeysingh.
It is always advisable to use these pills only as a last resort for contraception. Do not use them as a regular contraception. Adopt a regular contraception option to be safe against unwanted pregnancy.
Side effects of emergency contraceptive pills: Nausea and vomiting are some of the most common side effects of taking these pills. Some women may experience headaches and sore breast.