Plan B ‘Morning After’ Pill: What It Is and How to Get It

Forgetting to take a each day contraception tablet is simple to do, particularly when your life is hectic or unpredictable. But what occurs if in case you have unprotected intercourse after you have missed a tablet? Fortunately, there are emergency contraceptives, like Plan B, which have been proven to be an efficient approach to forestall undesirable pregnancies when your contraception methodology fails — or in the event you do not use one in any respect.

 With the fate of Roe v. Wade up in the air, this has been on folks’s minds greater than ever.

Let’s get one factor straight, proper off the bat: Plan B just isn’t an abortion tablet. It can’t finish a present being pregnant. What it could actually do is forestall a being pregnant from occurring in any respect.

We’ll clarify how Plan B works, when it’s best to (and should not) take it and how to get it. 

What is the Plan B tablet?

Plan B is the model identify for levonorgestrel, an artificial type of the hormone progestin that briefly delays ovulation — when an egg is launched from the ovary. By delaying ovulation, the tablet retains sperm from fertilizing an egg and thus prevents being pregnant after unprotected intercourse. The tablet will not have an effect on your capability to get pregnant sooner or later, in accordance to Plan B One-Step’s website.

It is an over-the-counter emergency contraceptive tablet that is additionally known as the “morning after tablet” as a result of folks usually take it the day after having unprotected intercourse.

Note that Plan B is usually used as a catch-all time period for all emergency contraception, however there are emergency contraceptive capsules apart from Plan B, similar to Ella. However, Ella requires a prescription and can’t be purchased over-the-counter. Ella incorporates ulipristal acetate, a progesterone agonist that briefly delays ovulation and could be taken up to 5 days after unprotected intercourse. It’s additionally stated to work higher than Plan B for many who weigh greater than 165 kilos.

How quickly must you take Plan B after unprotected intercourse?

If you had intercourse and did not use contraception, together with capsules or condoms, it is really helpful that you simply take Plan B inside 72 hours. The sooner you possibly can take it, the higher it really works. 

You may also take it to forestall an unplanned being pregnant in the event you missed a dose of your contraception tablet or if there was a problem with the type of contraception you used — if, as an example, the condom broke.

You can use Plan B’s countdown calculator to decide in the event you’re nonetheless in the time-frame that it will be efficient at stopping being pregnant.

How efficient is Plan B?

plan B one step packaging

One bundle of Plan B comes with one tablet.


Plan B One-Step

When Plan B is used throughout the 72-hour timeframe, it could actually considerably lower the possibilities of getting pregnant. Roughly seven out of every eight people — or almost 88% — who might have grow to be pregnant did not achieve this after taking it.

“Use this intervention as quickly as doable after a sexual relationship during which being pregnant is feasible,” Dr. Gloria Bachmann, director of the Women’s Health Institute at Rutgers University, advised CNET.

After 72 hours the effectiveness decreases, though you possibly can take the tablet up to 5 days after unprotected intercourse.

Also, Plan B could also be much less efficient in individuals who weigh more than 165 pounds. Other emergency contraception capsules, like Ella, may be much less efficient for many who weigh 195 pounds or more

Bachmann recommends girls who weigh greater than 165 kilos ask their clinician for alternate options in the event that they’re involved that levonorgestrel is much less efficient for them. 

However, analysis is unclear on whether or not or how a lot weight influences the effectiveness of emergency contraceptives. It’s nonetheless price taking a dose in the event you want one, no matter your weight.

What Plan B should not be used for

While Plan B is efficient in minimizing the prospect of changing into pregnant, there are some things it should not be used for, in accordance to Plan B’s producer.

Don’t use Plan B rather than your common contraception as a result of it solely stays in your system for a brief period of time. Continue utilizing your common contraception after taking Plan B.

Don’t take Plan B whenever you’re pregnant. The producer notes that it is not an abortion tablet and won’t have an effect on an present being pregnant.

Don’t use Plan B to attempt to forestall sexually transmitted ailments. Plan B can solely assist to forestall being pregnant, so it is best to use barrier strategies, like condoms, for stopping STDs.

How to get a Plan B tablet

Plan B is obtainable over-the-counter in shops and on-line at main retailers, like CVS, Walgreens, Walmart, Target, Amazon and Rite Aid. You may also purchase it from the Plan B web site. You do not want to present an ID or have a prescription. 

It prices roughly $40 to $50 for one tablet, relying on the place you purchase it from. Some insurance coverage could cowl emergency contraceptives, so we suggest contacting your insurance coverage firm for extra particulars. If your plan does not cowl it, a pharmacist may be able to tell you why.

If you do not have insurance coverage or your plan does not cowl Plan B, you might give you the chance to get it free or at reduced cost out of your native well being division, Planned Parenthood or different well being clinics.

Who can use Plan B?

Anyone who can grow to be pregnant is eligible to take Plan B, no matter their age. But there’s some analysis that exhibits it might be much less efficient for some folks.

The Food and Drug Administration said in 2016 that each one individuals who ovulate, no matter how a lot they weigh, can use emergency contraceptives like Plan B to forestall being pregnant. However, some CDC studies present that it will not be as efficient for individuals who have a BMI of 30 or greater, or who weigh 165 pounds or extra. At this time, there’s nonetheless not sufficient analysis to present if weight impacts the effectiveness of Plan B.

There are medications that may disrupt how nicely the morning-after tablet works, together with the antibiotic Rifampin, the antifungal Griseofulvin, some HIV medicines, some anti-seizure medicines and St. John’s wort. Bachmann stated individuals who use barbiturates — depressant medication prescribed by docs or bought illegally — mustn’t take a levonorgestrel tablet.

If you are taking any of these medication, seek the advice of your physician earlier than utilizing Plan B.

What are the unwanted effects of Plan B?

Plan B is considered safe to use, however there are some side effects you might expertise:

  • Your interval might be lighter, heavier, earlier or later than common
  • Nausea
  • Lower stomach cramps
  • Tiredness
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Breast tenderness
  • Vomiting — if this occurs inside two hours, contact your well being care supplier to see if one other dose is critical.

The data contained on this article is for instructional and informational functions solely and just isn’t meant as well being or medical recommendation. Always seek the advice of a doctor or different certified well being supplier relating to any questions you could have a couple of medical situation or well being targets.

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