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Emergency Contraception

Emergency contraception stops you getting pregnant after sex without a condom, or if your usual contraception has failed.

There are two emergency contraception options:

  • Emergency IUD (coil)
  • Emergency hormonal contraception (EHC), also known as ‘the morning after pill’

Emergency IUD

An emergency IUD requires a coil to be fitted within 5 days after unprotected sex/contraception failure. After fitting, the IUD can act as a long term contraceptive, preventing unplanned pregnancy.

If you would like an emergency IUD please call us on 0300 124 0102 or book your appointment online.

Emergency hormonal contraception (EHC)

Emergency hormonal contraception (often referred to as ‘the morning after pill’) is a pill you can take after sex without a condom (or a contraceptive failure) which vastly reduces the chance of pregnancy by preventing or delaying ovulation. 

Despite being known as ‘the morning after pill’, EHC can be taken up to 120 hours (5 days) after having unprotected sex, depending on the kind of pill you take.

Please note that there are two kinds of pills. One needs to be taken within 72 hours (3 days), and the other needs to be taken within 120 hours (5 days). Emergency hormonal contraception is more effective the sooner you take it, so act fast.

EHC is an emergency form of contraception and should not be used as a regular method of contraception.

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs)

Please remember that the pill and coil will NOT protect you from sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Only condoms can help do this. If you have had unprotected sex, we would also advise that you get a check-up for sexually transmitted infections (STIs), click here to find out more about STI testing. Find out more about how to get a free supply of condoms with our C-Card.

How to access emergency contraception

If you are aged 24 and under, some pharmacies across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland will provide you with EHC (morning after pill) free of charge.

To find your nearest pharmacy, visit our Clinic and Service Locator.

To order your EHC pill online, please click here.

Alternatively, you can access EHC from your GP or SHACC practices.

Termination of pregnancy

If you think you could be pregnant, you should do a pregnancy test as soon as possible. You can carry out a pregnancy test three weeks (21 days) from the last time that you had unprotected sex. If you do a test any earlier it may not be accurate.

If you are unsure that you wish to continue with the pregnancy, visit our pregnancy page for more information and advice on your options and next steps.

Midlands Partnership Foundation NHS Trust Providing Sexual Health Services in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland. Services commissioned by Leicester City and Leicestershire and Rutland County Councils.
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