The morning-after pill, also known as emergency contraception, is a type of birth control that can be used to prevent pregnancy after unprotected sex or contraceptive failure.
It is most effective when taken within 72 hours of intercourse, although it can be effective up to five days after.
While the morning-after pill is generally considered safe, it is important to be aware of the potential side effects.
The most common side effects of the morning-after pill include nausea, vomiting, and diarrhoea.
These symptoms are usually mild and should go away within a few days. Some women may also experience headaches, dizziness, fatigue, or breast tenderness.
These side effects are generally considered normal and are not cause for alarm.
Less Common Side Effects
In some cases, women may experience more serious side effects after taking the morning-after pill. These include:
1. Allergic reactions
Some women may experience an allergic reaction to the medication. Symptoms may include hives, swelling of the face or tongue, or difficulty breathing. If you experience any of these symptoms after taking the morning-after pill, seek medical attention immediately.
2. Ectopic pregnancy
While the morning-after pill is highly efficient at preventing pregnancy, it is not 100% effective. In rare cases, women who take the morning-after pill may still become pregnant, and the pregnancy may be ectopic. An ectopic pregnancy occurs when the fertilised egg implants outside of the uterus, typically in the fallopian tube. This can be a serious and potentially life-threatening condition that requires immediate medical attention.
3. Changes in menstrual cycle
The morning-after pill can affect your menstrual cycle, causing irregular bleeding or spotting. You may also experience heavier or lighter periods than usual. These changes are generally temporary and should go away within a few cycles.
4. Mood changes
Some women may experience mood changes after taking the morning-after pill. This may include feeling more emotional or irritable than usual. These symptoms should go away within a few days.
5. Blood clots
In rare cases, the morning-after pill may increase the risk of blood clots. Symptoms may include swelling, redness, or warmth in the leg, chest pain, or difficulty breathing. If you experience any of these symptoms, seek medical attention immediately.
The morning-after pill is a safe and effective way to prevent pregnancy after unprotected sex or contraceptive failure. While it is generally well-tolerated, it is important to be aware of the potential side effects. If you experience any unusual symptoms after taking the morning-after pill, seek medical attention immediately.
It is also important to note that the morning-after pill should not be used as a regular form of birth control, as it is less effective than other methods and may have more side effects. If you are considering using emergency contraception, talk to your healthcare provider about the best options for you.