If you have unprotected sexual intercourse, you may get pregnant even if you do not want to be.

Mishaps and accidents can also occur with contraception. This means you could get pregnant despite using contraception. For example, a condom can slip off. You can forget to take your pill or you can have severe diarrhoea and the pill could not work correctly.

What should I do?

If you want to get pregnant : Do nothing.

If you do not want to get pregnant, you have two options:

  1. You can take the emergency contraceptive pill.
  2. You can get a gynaecologist to put in a copper IUD.

Emergency contraceptive pill

The emergency contraceptive pill delays or inhibits ovulation. You must take the emergency contraceptive pill as soon as possible, preferably in the first twelve hours after sexual intercourse. There are two different medications for the emergency contraceptive pill. One will work for a maximum of 72 hours (three days) after sexual intercourse, the other no longer than 120 hours (five days) after sexual intercourse.

You can buy the emergency contraceptive pill without a prescription at a pharmacy. You can get advice about the emergency contraceptive pill at a pharmacy or from a doctor.

Emergency contraceptive pill

The emergency contraceptive pill does not cause an abortion. The emergency contraceptive pill prevents a pregnancy from occurring.

Do not use the emergency contraceptive pill as a form of contraception. If you have to take the emergency contraceptive pill more than once or twice, it is better if you opt for a more reliable contraceptive method.

You can get counselling on different methods of contraception at a counselling centre or from a doctor.

The copper IUD as emergency contraception

In the first five days after unprotected sexual intercourse, a pregnancy can also be prevented with a copper IUD. You can have the copper IUD inserted by a gynaecologist . It prevents the fertilized egg from implanting in your uterus.

The copper IUD is a normal method of contraception that also works in emergency situations. It protects from unwanted pregnancies immediately. Using an IUD as emergency contraception makes sense if you also want to use it as contraception in the future. The copper IUD only needs to be changed after three to five years.

Copper IUD
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