Everyone knows that Christmas is the busiest time of the year. And when your schedule is chock-a-block with work dos, parties, present wrapping and shopping, it’s easy to forget to take your contraceptive pill, take it at the wrong time – or even find you’ve run out of pills. The good news? There’s no need to stress. We have the solution to each of your pill-related problems – and here’s what to do…  

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If you’ve run out of your pills and can’t get a doctor’s appointment

Superdrug Online Doctor advises that, for your pill to be most effective, you should take it at the same time each day. If you’re on the traditional progestogen-only pill, you must take it within three hours of the same time each day. If you’re on the desogestrel progesterone-only pill, you must take it within 12 hours of the same time each day (always follow the instructions that come with your pill pack). If you’re finding it hard to remember to do this at busy times like Christmas, we suggest you decide on a time of day that works best for you, and set an alarm.

If you’ve forgotten to take the darn thing altogether

If you’re on the progesterone-only pill, the time window within which pills need to be taken is much smaller than that of the combined pill. If you take it more than three hours late, it may not be effective. Whereas if you are on the desogestrel progesterone-only pill, you have less than a 12-hour window.

If you don’t manage to take it within this time, take your pill as soon as you remember but only take one, even if you’ve missed more than one pill. Take your next pill at the usual time – this may mean taking two pills on the same day (one when you remember and one at the usual time), this is not harmful. Then continue taking your remaining pills each day at the usual time and use extra contraception such as condoms for the next two days (48 hours) after you remember to take your missed pill, or don’t have sex. If you have had unprotected sex during the two days after missing your pill, you may require emergency contraception. You can get advice from your GP or contraception clinic.

If you have had a missed pill and have had unprotected sex before protection has kicked back in, you need to take the morning-after pill. You can get it from the Superdrug online doctor. Pop into your nearest Superdrug pharmacy, have it delivered to your door or collect in store.

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