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Sexual Health
Condoms & Contraceptives
Emergency Contraceptives
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Contraceptives put the power of birth control in your hands. It is especially important to know that you have options if your regular method of birth control fails. Whether you use condoms, the pill, or another method, no one is perfect and sometimes things can go wrong. If that happens, don’t panic! Emergency birth control may be able to help.

How Does Emergency Contraception Work?

Emergency contraception, sometimes called the morning after pill, can help prevent pregnancy when taken within 72 hours of having unprotected sex or a birth control failure. Emergency contraceptives work by delaying or preventing ovulation so that conception will not occur. Plan B, a popular emergency contraceptive, contains a high dose of levonorgestrel, the same type of hormone found in many daily birth control pills. While taking the Plan B pill is generally safe, emergency contraceptives should not be used as a regular method of birth control. Additionally, you should know that emergency birth control is not an abortion pill and will not affect a pregnancy that has already begun.

Emergency birth control is easy to take. Most brands, including Plan B, come in tablet form and are simply taken by mouth. The sooner you take emergency contraceptives, the better they work. And remember, for emergency birth control to be effective, you must take it no more than 72 hours after having unprotected sex. Emergency contraception is extremely effective; about 7 out of every 8 women who would have gotten pregnant will not become pregnant after taking the Plan B pill within 72 hours of having unprotected sex.

Where to Buy Emergency Contraception

You can buy emergency contraception at CVS. You do not need a prescription or ID, and there is no minimum age for purchasing emergency birth control. It can be a good idea to keep a supply of emergency birth control pills at home. This can save you the stress of looking for a 24 hour pharmacy in your area if you have unprotected sex or a birth control failure. You can stock up online right here at CVS. Most orders ship free in just 1 – 2 days, so you won’t have to wait long to get your package. Just be sure to store your emergency contraceptives in a cool, dark place and always check the expiration date before use. If you have questions or concerns about using emergency birth control, do not hesitate to talk to your doctor.

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