The emergency contraceptive pill, otherwise known as the morning after pill, represents the treatment that prevents pregnancy, if other forms of contraception have failed to work or if you had unprotected sex. The morning after pill is most effective at preventing pregnancy if used soon after unprotected sex or failed contraceptive methods. The sooner you take emergency contraception, the higher the chances of prevention.
If you are concerned about any of the potential symptoms that the morning after pill may cause, you can book a completely confidential online consultation with our registered GMC doctor, who will provide support and advice. Once you have selected your medication and filled out a simple doctor’s questionnaire, our GP will review the answers you provide and issue a prescription. If, however, your treatment is not approved, you will be refunded in full.
If you have had unprotected sex or if your form of contraception have failed to work, for example a condom splitting or you have missed your contraceptive pill, then there are two main types of the emergency contraceptive pill that will work to prevent pregnancy:
Levonelle is the most common form of emergency contraceptive pill and it should be taken within 72 hours (3 days) after sex. Levonelle contains a synthetic version of the natural hormone progesterone, known as levonorgestrel. This form of emergency contraception works by preventing the ovaries from releasing an egg and by altering the lining of the womb, making it difficult for an egg to embed itself there. It can be obtained online from Oxford Online Pharmacy, following a free doctor's consultation, if you are aged 16 and above.
EllaOne is a new prescription-only emergency contraceptive pill, that can be taken up to 120 hours (5 days) following sex. It is available to women aged 18 and above. This form of emergency contraceptive pill works by preventing or delaying ovulation.
Both Levonelle and EllaOne are effective at preventing pregnancy if they are taken soon after unprotected sex; however, the sooner you take emergency contraception, the more effective it will be. During the rest of your menstrual cycle, Levonelle and EllaOne do not protect you against pregnancy; emergency contraceptives are not intended to be a routine form of contraception. In turn, repetitive use of the morning after pill can disrupt your natural menstrual cycle.
Emergency contraception has not been found to cause any serious side effects or troublesome health problems. However, common side effects can cause: