What is the "Morning After Pill"?

You may have heard about The Morning After Pill, also known as Emergency contraception (EC). EC is meant to be taken as soon as possible after unprotected sex or contraceptive failure, to dramatically lower the risk of getting pregnant. These are typically high doses of hormones like those found in birth control pills.

There are cautions and risks which will listed on the package or on an insert in the package. It is strongly recommended that you read all the information prior to taking the Morning AFter Pill or Emergency Contraceptives.

It is important to know that if you are already pregnant taking EC will not end a viable pregnancy. Also, if you have trouble with Birth Control pills it is best to discuss any use of EC with your medical provider.

Potential side effects:

  1. Nausea and vomiting
  2. Irregular and unpredictable menstrual periods
  3. Breast tenderness
  4. Blood clots

Long-term side effects may include:

  1. Ectopic pregnancy (when the fertilized egg implants in the fallopian tube)
  2. Infertility - Infertility can also be caused by certain STDs. It is important to remember that the Morning After Pill does not protect you from any sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
  3. While there are no long-term studies to show whether women will be permanently damaged by the Morning After Pill, women who take the Morning After Pill do put themselves at risk for such diseases as cancer from these chemicals being given in such high doses.

It wouldn't be like I was getting an abortion ... right?

If an egg has been fertilized (conception), and you take the pill, the pill will work to prevent the egg from implanting in your uterine wall. If this happens, an abortion will occur, because the egg has already been fertilized. The fertilization of an egg can occur as early as 15 minutes after intercourse. The fertilized egg contains all 46 human chromosomes. These chromosomes are the complex genetic design that will determine the hair, sex, eye color, skin tone and height of a child. Medically and scientifically human life begins at conception. There is debate as to when that human life is to be valued and protected. This is something you need to consider when thinking about EC.

 

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