Most young couples rely on birth control pills after unprotected sex, but are they effective enough to prevent unwanted pregnancy? There are many methods of birth control like condoms, copper T, vaginal rings and male and female sterilization. But what concerns us is whether birth control pills are effective in preventing pregnancy.
How does a contraceptive pill work?
Contraceptive pills have a small amount of man-made estrogen and progestin hormones that affect the female body’s natural cyclical hormones and prevents pregnancy. Here is how a contraceptive pill works:
- Hormonal birth control pills prevent the body from ovulating
- It also changes the cervical mucus that makes it difficult for the sperm to enter through the cervix and reach the egg to fertilize it.
- Hormonal contraceptive pills also change the lining of the womb where the egg gets implanted and prevents pregnancy.
While birth control pills will protect you against an accidental pregnancy happening, they do not protect you against sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) or act as an abortion alternative in case your pregnancy has developed. However, the effectiveness of this pill also depends on how soon you take these medicines after an unprotected sex.
Side-effects of contraceptive pills:
Contraceptive pills are safe and effective and can be used by any women in their child-bearing years although a doctor keeps in mind these following circumstances before prescribing a contraceptive pill like pregnancy, lactation, menstrual symptoms, cardiac health, any chronic illness, or if you are into some other medications.
Contraceptive pills usually have little or no side-effects but some women complain of the following:
- Nausea and dizziness
- Light spotting
- Fluctuations in weight
- Sore and tender breasts
These are some common side effects but they usually go away when you get used to a particular contraceptive pill. But if you notice significant side effects like abdominal or chest pain, severe headache or blurry vision, take medical help at once.
Here are some common brands of oral contraceptive pills available –
- Duoluton L
Most of these pills contain levonorgestrel that inhibits the fertilization of eggs released and inhibits the lining of the uterus. Almost all these pills also cure menstrual issues, regularize periods and are said to treat ovarian cysts.
But these pills should never be taken or adviced to anyone without a doctor’s prescription. These are hormonal pills and must be taken only if prescribed by a gynaecologist.
What is an Emergency Contraception?
Let us learn something more about these hormonal pills, aka contraceptive pills which are also known as ‘Emergency Contraception’.
If you’ve had unwanted coitus or had sex without using a contraceptive like a condom, birth control pills can be taken to prevent an accidental pregnancy. Also if regular birth control methods have failed- like breakage of a condom, missed oral birth control pills or miscalculating the ‘safe days’, you can use a contraceptive pill which will be effective.
However, these medications can never be used for regular birth control method.
Here are some top emergency control pills available in the Indian market –
The Indian market is filled with a number of emergency pills from different brands. And you must remember that these pills are sold only for emergency purposes at pharmacies and departmental stores. You can acquire these pills without a prescription. We have mentioned a list of emergency contraceptive pills you can buy from the market, should the need arise.
It is one of the most popular emergency contraceptive pill available in the Indian market. It has traces of hormone levonorgestrol which offers you the maximum protection against pregnancy.
Unwanted 72 –
This also comes as a single drug in a packet and protects you against unintended pregnancy. Since it is devoid of estrogen, chances of gastrointestinal upsets and nausea are less.
This is a two-pill pack that contains the hormone levonorgestrol. You must consume the first pill at the earliest after unprotected sex followed by the second pill which you must take after 12 hours of having the first pill.
Nextime pill –
This is also an emergency contraceptive pill and you must consume it within the 72 hours of unprotected sex.
A single-dose pregnancy preventing pill, you must consume it within the first 72 hours of unprotected intercourse to effectively avert unintended pregnancy.
While these are some emergency-purpose contraceptive pills that you can take without a prescription, but if you are looking for a long term contraceptive option, you must visit your gynaecologist.