How Effective is the Morning After Pill?

How Effective is the Morning After Pill?

The morning after pill can prevent pregnancy if taken within the recommended timeframe after unprotected sex. How effective is it and what can reduce its effectiveness? Find out how to use it and how to avoid getting pregnant.

Last reviewed: 11/06/2020 by Dr Simran Deo

Top tips for taking the morning after pill

1. The sooner you take the morning after pill, the better.

Don’t leave any more time than necessary between having unprotected sex and taking the morning after pill. The sooner you take it, the more likely it is to be effective.

2. If you have diarrhoea or vomiting after taking it, consult a doctor.

If you are sick or have severe diarrhoea within 3 hours after taking the morning after pill, there is a risk that it won’t work. If this happens, you need to consult a doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible to check whether you need to take a second pill.

3. Make sure you mention any medication you are taking or have taken recently and any medical problems you suffer from to your pharmacist or doctor.

Certain medications and remedies can stop the morning after pill from working. Before you take the morning after pill, inform your prescribing doctor or your pharmacist of any medication you have recently taken. Suffering from certain health conditions may mean that one type of morning after pill is more suitable for you.