There has never been a better time for women in terms of contraceptive healthcare. For women who wish to prevent pregnancy or reduce the risk of STIs, both your GP's office and local pharmacy provide a dizzying array of products to achieve that goal. The types of contraceptives are numerous, and they range from a wide variety of pills to multiple barrier methods. No matter what your personal preference, female contraception is widely available, highly varied, and easy to procure from The Independent Pharmacy.
Depending on the type you choose, contraception prevents STIs and pregnancy in various ways.
These are the most popular contraceptive method among women. Birth control pills are taken orally and emit a low dose of synthetic hormones that suppress ovulation and inhibit the movement of sperm and the implantation of eggs. All of these actions lead to a significantly reduced chance of becoming pregnant following unprotected intercourse.
There are numerous contraceptive pills available on the market to suit each woman’s individual circumstances. Some may be taken every day and will stop your periods whilst others are taken in cycles with a regular period in-between. Oral contraceptives by themselves do not prevent against HIV/STIs and should be used in conjunction with a barrier method. Oral hormonal contraceptives have the advantage that they can be taken every day and do not require any interruption during sex.
There are two main types of contraceptive pills: combined pills and progesterone-only pills:
You can read more about combined pills here.
You can read more about progesterone-only pills here.
In the event of barrier or hormonal birth control failure, there also exist morning-after pills, which are single pills, taken orally, that can prevent pregnancy for up to five days after the event of unprotected sex. Emergency contraception (EC) can inhibit implantation and delay ovulation if it has not already occurred.
Emergency contraception is ineffective against an egg that has already implanted. This means that emergency contraception must be taken as soon as possible, but within 72 hours and 120 hours for Levonelle and EllaOne respectively. EllaOne is now considered to be the best form of emergency contraception due to it’s longer window of action. It remains very effective during the entire 120 hour period following unprotected sex, whereas the effectiveness of Levonelle decreases to less than 60% by 48-72 hours.
Emergency contraception should only be used when regular methods of contraception, such as barrier methods like condoms, have failed and there is a risk that unprotected sex has occurred. It should not be used regularly as the first line of contraception.
Remember, hormonal contraceptive pills, whether they are regular contraceptive pills or emergency contraception, can protect against pregnancy but does not protect against STIs.
Condoms are some of the most popular choices of contraception when it comes to family planning. With a barrier method like condoms, the contraceptive device acts as a literal barrier between egg and sperm. This means that as well as helping to prevent pregnancy, if used properly, they can reduce the risk of STIs as well. Condoms and other barrier methods carry the advantage that they do not need to be incorporated into your daily routine and can be used as and when required.
At The Independent Pharmacy, our Online Doctor is able to offer women repeat supplies of their contraceptive pills (see below for a full list) that have been previously prescribed by their GP, following an online consultation. The Independent Pharmacy can help you to quickly and easily get a repeat supply of your pill if you can’t make it to your GP. Our services are economical, easy, and confidential.
The Independent Pharmacy Online Doctor service is able to make repeat supplies of your current contraceptive pill from the following list:
Brevinor, Cerazette, Cerelle, Cilest, Dianette, Eloine, Femodette, Femodene, Femodene ED, Femodette, Gedarel 20/150, Gedarel 30/150, Kayta, Levest, Loestrin 20, Loestrin 30, Logynon, Logynon ED, Lucette, Mercilon, Microgynon, Microgynon ED, Millinette 20, Millinette 30, Noriday, Norimin, Ovranette, Rigevidon, Synphase, Triadene, Triregol, Yasmin.
As a woman, you may have to try a few different birth control options until you find one that works for you. There are other options like the hormonal coil, natural planning, and the implant that your GP can take you through. One of them might be appropriate for you.
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