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Oral Contraception

Birth Control Pill

What is the Birth Control Pill?

The Pill is a family planning method women use to plan their pregnancies. If you are sexually active and do not want to become pregnant, you can use the Pill. When you decide you are ready for a child, you simply stop taking the Pill. A few months after that, you can become pregnant. That is right! You have the power to decide when you want to become pregnant. When taken as directed, the Pill will enable you to have the number of children you want when you want them. Awesome!

How does the Pill work?

A woman produces an egg every month. If this egg meets a man’s sperm, the sperm will fertilize the egg and she will become pregnant. The Pill prevents the release of the egg and thus prevents the sperm from meeting and fertilizing the egg. Before you start taking the Pill, talk to your doctor or family planning association. They will give you a basic health check and advise you if the Pill is right for you.

Oral Contraception

Getting Started

The Pill is simple and easy to use. This is what you do:

If you are using the packet with 21 pills:

  • Take your first Pill any time during the first five days of your period
  • After that, take one Pill a day every day until the packet is finished
  • Wait seven days after the packet is finished and start a new packet immediately after that.

If you are using a packet of 28 pills:

  • Take One Pill a day every day until the packet is finished
  • Start a new packet as soon as one packet is finished.

Can I start taking the Pill more than five days after my period has passed?

Yes, you can. If you start taking the Pill more than 5 days after your period began, you should:

  • Take One Pill a day every day
  • Use an additional method for the first seven days

When I want to become pregnant, what should I do?

When you want to become pregnant, stop taking the Pill three to six months before.

The Big Questions

Try to develop a habit of taking your Pill every day as directed. If you do miss your Pill, do not panic. Follow these simple instructions:

 If you miss 1 or 2 Pills, you should:

  • Take the Pill you missed as soon as you remember
  • Take the other Pill at the usual time
  • Continue taking the other Pills one per day as before.

If you missed 3 or more pills, you should do the following:

  • Take one Pill as soon as you remember
  • Take the other Pill at the usual time
  • Continue as before taking one Pill a day
  • Use an additional method for the next seven days.

If you miss your Pill and you need more advice, call your doctor, nurse, or family planning association. They will help you.

What if I have sex only once in a while?

If you are not having sex regularly or if your partner goes away for a few days, you should not stop taking the Pill. If you skip your Pills, you can become pregnant.

*TIP: Try to take the Pill at about the same time every day. It will help you remember not to miss it.

Are there any side effects?

Yes. BUT most women who use the Pill do not experience any side effects.

Some women do experience side effects like nausea, spotting, mild headaches or breast tenderness. These generally go away in two to three months.

If they do not go away, go to your family planning association or doctor and they will advise you on what to do.

Does the Pill Protect me from Sexually Transmitted Infections?

NO! The Pill does not protect you from HIV/AIDS or other sexually transmitted infections. If you are not sure of your partner, you should use a condom correctly every time you have sex.

Are there other benefits from using the Pill?

Yes, there are. The Pill helps women who suffer from:

  • Painful periods
  • Anemia because of heavy periods
  • Pelvic inflammatory disease
  • Ovarian cancer.

Of course, women also experience the comfort of having sex without worrying about becoming pregnant before they want to.

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