Emergency contraception can help prevent a woman from becoming pregnant. It comes in two forms, the emergency contraception pill (also known as the morning after pill) and the IUD (also known as the coil). The sooner you access emergency contraception (Levonelle or ELLA1), the more likely it is to work.
I don’t like the feel of condoms – it’s like having sex with your wellies on.
Maybe we need to use lots of lube to make it feel better and anyway, I’d rather lose a little feeling than be a parent or risk getting STIs.
You’re on the pill so we don’t need to use a condom.
The pill only protects against becoming pregnant but using a condom means we’re protected against STIs as well.
We’ve been going out for months now, we don’t need condoms any more.
Well, I’m not ready to be a parent yet, and I don’t want to risk sharing STIs either, no matter how long we’ve been together.
I’m allergic to condoms.
That’s ok, you can get allergy free ones, known as latex free, they are available free from the C Card Scheme.
I really don’t want to use condoms.
That’s fine, we don’t have to have penetrative sex then, there’s lots of other stuff we can do.
Oh, do you think I’ve been sleeping about then? Don’t you trust me? You want to use condoms?
It’s nothing to do with that, It’s just that there are some STIs that have no symptoms so you or I might have one and not even know, so I just want to protect you and me.
What to do if you’ve had unprotected sex
If you have had unprotected penetrative sex or you think that your protection has failed, you can use emergency contraception to prevent you becoming pregnant. Emergency contraception is either: the emergency contraceptive pill (also known as the morning after pill) or the IUD (also known as the coil)
Will it prevent me getting pregnant?
The emergency contraception pill is most effective if taken within 24 hours, however it can still be taken up to 72 hours (3 days) later. There is a new pill which can be taken up to 5 days after unprotected sexual intercourse. This is only available from your GP or Sexual Health and Reproductive Service.
To make an appointment at your local Sexual Health and Reproductive Service call 0300 303 0251 (Line open Monday to Friday 9.00 a.m. to 4.45 p.m).
It is extremely unlikely that pregnancy will occur after having an IUD fitted. An IUD can be fitted up to 120 hours (5 days) later.
How does emergency contraception work?
Emergency contraception stops an egg being released (ovulation) or they may stop a fertilised egg settling in your womb (implanting). You would be advised not to take alcohol or drugs for 24 hours after taking the emergency pill in case you are sick.
You will be given a pill (Levonelle) as part of the emergency contraception pill prescription.
How does the IUD work?
The doctor fits an IUD in your womb. It may stop sperm meeting an egg (fertilisation) or it may stop a fertisilised egg settling in your womb (implanting).
Can I use emergency contraception regularly?
Emergency contraception is not as effective as conventional methods of contraception (eg condoms). It is not recommended for regular use.
If you’d like to talk over your contraception options, you can come and talk it over and be given contraception which suits you best at your local Sexual Health and Reproductive Service or at one of the services listed under the Services section in this website. To make an appointment call 0300 303 0251 (Line open Monday to Friday 9.00 a.m. to 4.45 p.m.)