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Taking emergency contraceptive doesn’t guarantee success of not getting pregnant if all precautions are not followed strictly. Below are four reasons why your emergency contraceptive can fail. 

  • When you don’t take it soon enough after unprotected sex.

Almost all emergency contraceptive pills are effective when you take them within 72 hours after unprotected sex. After this period the effectiveness of the drug start reducing. When you take emergency contraceptive pills after the 72 hours (3 days) your chances of becoming pregnant increases. Don’t delay taking emergency contraceptive pills if you want to prevent pregnancy after an unprotected sex because the sooner you take it, the better it’s going to work. It is very important to always read the drug leaflet to check the supposed period that emergency contraceptive operates.

  • When you throw up/ vomit after taking emergency contraceptive pills.

After taking an emergency control pill, your body needs at least 1 hour to metabolize (break down and absorb). Sometimes, females can experience the urge of vomiting/throwing up after taking emergency contraceptive. No matter the situation, if you vomit/throw up with 1 hour or less after taking emergency contraceptive pills, you need to take another pill to play it safe. There is the possibility that the body haven’t had enough time to metabolize the drug.

  • When you take emergency contraceptive during ovulation.

Taking emergency contraceptive is all about timing. Emergency contraceptive pills mainly prevents pregnancy by temporarily stopping or delaying ovulation (ovaries from releasing an egg). If you’ve ovulated before taking an emergency contraceptive pill, it won’t stop an egg meeting a sperm to create a pregnancy. So, the next time you happen to have unprotected sex during your fertile window, four days before you ovulate, the day you ovulate, and the day after you’re just naturally more likely to get pregnant. It’s not a reliable everyday protection. If you want to avoid all this mathematics, the best contraceptive to go for is regular IUD because this works by inhibiting sperm. Your menstrual cycle doesn’t matter. Remember IUD is not an emergency contraceptive but a regular contraceptive.

  • When you have more unprotected sex after you take EC.

Most time people have the notion that after taking emergency contraceptive, they are free to have subsequent unprotected sex without getting pregnant. This is not true. Emergency contraceptive only delays your ovulation but doesn’t stop ovulation. Since the sperm cells take 5 to 7 days before they are destroyed in the females, by the time ovulation resumes, the sperms wouldn’t be active to cause pregnancy. So, having unprotected sex after taking an emergency contraceptive increases your chance of becoming pregnant since the delay of your ovulation is approaching an end. If you want to prevent pregnancy, make sure you take emergency contraceptive after every unprotected sex.

In conclusion, everyone makes mistakes. If you have an unprotected sex and the need to use emergency contraceptive arise, go for it. Do not feel embarrassed.

This blog pro­vides infor­ma­tion about vaginal health and related sub­jects. The blog content and any linked materials herein are not intended to be, and should not be con­strued as a substitute for, med­ical or healthcare advice, diagnosis or treatment. Any reader or per­son with a med­ical con­cern should con­sult a healthcare provider. This blog is provided purely for informational purposes.

The article was written by Godfrey Yeboah Amoah and published at vagicarekonsult.com Translation and voice note were done by Mrs. Nancy Boateng

Godfrey Yeboah Amoah
Godfrey Yeboah Amoah

Godfrey Yeboah Amoah is a reproductive health and rights activist and the founder of Vagicare Konsult. A medical Laboratory scientist by profession and specialty in population and health, Godfrey combines his professional knowledge, experience and specialty to educate females on quality reproductive health practices


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