Valley Teen Clinic

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Plan B

 Plan B aka Emergency Contraceptive Pill (ECP) aka Morning After Pill (MAP)

 

What is Plan B?

Plan B is an emergency back up plan that helps prevent pregnancy after birth control failure, unprotected sex, or sexual assault. It is not a substitute of routine birth control and should not be used as one. Plan B is not RU-486 (the abortion pill).

 

When should it be taken?

Plan B should be taken within 3days (72 hours) of unprotected sex or birth control failure. If necessary it may be taken up to 5days (120 hours) later. The sooner you take it, the more effective it will be. Plan B will not work if you’re already pregnant nor will it hurt the fetus.

 

How effective is it?

Plan B reduces the chances of getting pregnant by up to 89% if used correctly. That means that 7 out of 8 women who were exposed to an unwanted pregnancy won’t get pregnant after using Plan B.

 

How does it work?

Plan b is FDA approved- it contains the hormone levonorgestrel, the same ingredient found in many birth control pills. The difference is that Plan B contains a larger dose of levonorgestrel than the amount found in a single birth control pill; unlike many birth control pills, Plan B does not control any estrogen. The balance of the hormones work by preventing ovulation.  It’s important to know that Plan B does not protect you against human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or any other sexually transmitted disease (STD).

 

What are the side effects?

There are many possible side effects to Plan B. They may include nausea, abdominal pain, fatigue, headache, menstrual changes, dizziness, breast tenderness, vomiting, and diarrhea. While some women may experience all side effects, others will experience only some or none at all. All bodies are different; therefore each body will react differently.

 

Remember…

-You do not need a prescription if you are 17 or older

-Gender does not matter when buying it over a counter if you are 17 or older