Morning after pill or emergency contraception pills are over the counter drugs available to prevent pregnancy within 72 hours of unprotected sex or intercourse. There are many popular brands available like i-pill and unwanted 72. They are very high dose of the hormone progestin/levonorgestrel which are known to prevent fertilization/conception by way of delaying to stopping ovulation.
Effectiveness of emergency contraception
If taken within 72 hours, emergency contraception pills are known to prevent pregnancy in 99% of the cases. The user need not to worry about pregnancy if she has consumed the medicine within the stipulated 72 hours.
Side effects of emergency contraception
As all the emergency contraceptive pills are very high dose of the hormones, they are known to cause certain side effects which are common to the early symptoms of pregnancy. This often leads the user confused and baffled that she might be pregnant. However, in most of the cases, it’s not the pregnancy, but the emergency contraception pill, which is producing the symptoms. The symptoms include the following:
- Abdominal pain
- Breast tenderness
- Delay in menstruation
- Occasional bleeding or spotting
- Weight gain
These side effects may continue for a month or two. The menstrual cycle may remain disturbed for next few months. In long run, being an steroid, these medicines cause substantial weight gain in the users.
Emergency contraceptives and STDs
Emergency contraceptive pills do not provide any protection from sexually transmitted disease like HIV, gonorrhoea or syphlis. Additional safety measures like condoms should be preferred for protection from such sexually transmitted diseases which could prove life threatening in long run.
Emergency contraception pills are not for regular use. Such high dose of hormone, if taken regularly might cause very serious side effects. So, they should never be used as regular method of contraception and should be avoided as far as possible.