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morning-after pill

If something didn’t go as you had thought it would, you might be worried about an unplanned pregnancy and are looking into Plan B, more commonly known as the morning-after pill. As with all areas of your sexual health, it’s important to be informed about this emergency method of contraception before you use it (see bottom of page for potential risks and side effects).

how does it work?

The emergency contraceptive works in one of three ways:

1) delaying or inhibiting ovulation
2) inhibiting sperm from meeting or fertilizing an egg
3) inhibiting implantation of an already fertilized egg in the uterus

Although you may be looking at this as an emergency contraceptive, it is important to note that it is not entirely effective in preventing pregnancy. It comes with risks and side effects (see below for a more detailed description), and will not protect you from STI’s.

If you have questions about the morning-after pill, you may contact us for more information.

even though I already took a pill, I think that I may still be pregnant

We can provide you with a free pregnancy test, and options counseling with a trained peer-counselor. We are a compassionate and confidential place where you are welcome and safe to talk about your situation, whatever it may be.

click here for contact information and directions

does the morning-after pill have side effects and risks?

Like any medication, the incidence of risks and side effects is variable. Plan B® and Plan B One-Step® and Next Choice® are associated with the following side effects: nausea, abdominal pain, fatigue, headache, heavier menstrual bleeding and dizziness.

Forms of the morning-after pill that contain the hormone estrogen carry the potential risks associated with that drug. These include: blood clots, stroke and heart attack.

There is some evidence that the morning-after pill may put a woman at increased risk for an ectopic pregnancy (a pregnancy occurring outside the uterus). Symptoms of ectopic pregnancy are similar to the potential side effects associated with the use of the morning-after pill. It is critical that anyone experiencing these symptoms be evaluated by a physician, as an ectopic pregnancy can be life-threatening.

what is unknown about the morning-after pill?

There is much that is unknown about the drug, such as:

  • its effect on women 16 and under
  • its effects when interacting with other drugs
  • its effects on women with medical conditions
  • its effects on women’s ovulation and future fertility
  • its effects on fetal growth and development
  • the effects of its long-term, routine use

Remember, your body and health are important, so take time to make the best decision. Please contact us to get more information.

Generic versions of the morning-after pill are available and are presumed to work similarly to name brands.

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