The Morning After Pill

Presented By Abby Ramsey

The Morning After Pill is a good pregnancy prevention method to use in emergencies, but is not a healthy choice to use on a regular basis because of the high doses of hormones.

What is the Morning After Pill?

The Morning After Pill is a form of birth control in which the female takes a pill within 72 hours of unprotected sex that contains a higher dose of the same hormones that are used in birth control pills to prevent pregnancy. These pills contain either estrogen and progestin or just progestin. Some kinds of the morning after pill can be taken within 3 days and others can be taken within 5.

How Does the Morning After Pill Prevent Pregnancy?

In order to prevent pregnancy, the morning after pill should be taken within 72 hours of unprotected sex, this is the equivalent to 3 days. Depending on where a female is in her menstrual cycle, the morning after pill prevents pregnancy differently. It can prevent ovulation or prevent an egg from becoming fertilized. If the egg is already fertilized, the morning after pill prevents the egg from implanting into the uterus. If the egg has already been fertilized and has implanted into the uterus, this pill will not terminate or hurt the pregnancy.

Where Can Someone Purchase the Morning After Pill? How Much Does it Cost?

The Morning After Pill is available over the counter at various locations. You can purchase this pill at a local drugstore, a family planning clinic, at planned parenthood, or at a pharmacy. Anyone can purchase Plan B and doesn't require parental consent. Other methods require that you are older than 16 years old or have a doctor's prescription. Depending on the kind of morning after pill you buy, it can cost anywhere between $35 and $65.

Is the Morning After Pill Effective?

The Morning After Pill is proven to be 89% effective if taken within 72 hours and the instructions have been followed correctly. In one year alone, the morning after pill prevented 51 thousand pregnancies that would've otherwise ended in abortions.

What Are the Drawbacks of the Morning After Pill?

Along with preventing pregnancy, there are a few side effects that can occur when the morning after pill is taken. It can cause a female's period to be lighter or heavier than normal, earlier or later than normal, and for her period to become irregular. The morning after pill may cause tenderness of the breasts, dizziness, or headaches. Half of the time the morning after pill is taken, it causes nausea. These symptoms will go away after 2 days. Your period will typically go back to normal during your next period. Although there are some drawbacks to the morning after pill, there are some benefits.

What are the Benefits of the Morning After Pill?

The Morning After Pill is the one of the only methods of birth control that can be taken after sex and doesn't require a prescription. This is method that can be used if the male's condom breaks, if a couple forgets to use protection, and most importantly if a female is raped.

Are there any Long Term Effects of the Morning After Pill?

The morning after pill can cause a female to gain weight and could possibly lead to a blood clotting disease. The links between the morning after pill and cancer and future infertility are unknown. Although these effects aren't certain when taken, they still should be a deciding factor in whether or not the morning after pill is for you.

Miscellaneous Facts on the Morning After Pill

  • The morning after pill doesn't protect against STD's.
  • Pregnancy is more likely when sex occurs 2-3 weeks before a female's period. This is when she is ovulating.
  • The morning after pill reduces pregnancy rate to 1-3%.
  • Since 2000, more women have started to use the morning after pill.