If you have had sex without contraception or your contraception has failed (i.e. split condom or missed contraception) emergency contraception can help prevent a pregnancy.
There are two types of emergency contraception and these are available at our clinics.
Copper intrauterine device (IUD)
You can choose to have an IUD (coil) fitted, the IUD is a small device that is fitted in your uterus by a specially trained doctor or nurse. It is over 99% effective at preventing pregnancy but it needs to be fitted within five days (120 hours) of unprotected sex or up to five days after the earliest time you could have released an egg (ovulated).
You can have an IUD fitted for emergency contraception at our service; your GP surgery may also be able to fit an IUD.
Emergency Contraception Pill
The sooner you take emergency contraception the better it will work.
There are two kinds of the emergency contraceptive pill; these are sometimes called the ‘morning after pill’.
Levonogestrel (Levonelle) can be taken up to 72 hours (3 days) after unprotected sex. Ulipristal Acetate (ellaOne) can be taken up to 120 hours (5 days) after unprotected sex. Both pills work by preventing or delaying ovulation. Many of the Somerset Pharmacies offer both free to women under 18 years of age
It is important to note that neither pill may be effective if:
• If you have already ovulated before taking the pill
• Some medications can change the effectiveness of the pill such as ones that interfere with the way the liver processes drugs such as some HIV drugs, some epilepsy medication, as well as the over-the-counter herbal remedy St. John's wort,
• If you weigh more than 70kgs or have a body mass index greater than 26 you should be given double the dose of Levongestrel
If you need emergency contraception please phone or walk in to one of our clinics, if you are not able to get to one our clinics you can also obtain emergency contraception from;
• Your GP
• Other health professionals listed here including pharmacists, minor injury units and A&E