Morning after Pill

The Morning After Pill Online

The morning after pill is a term often used to describe an emergency contraceptive pill. These tablets can be taken shortly after an episode of unprotected sex to prevent pregnancy. You can buy the morning after pill online, from our UK registered online pharmacy and doctor service. You may also be able to get the morning after pill free of charge from your local STI clinic in England or a local pharmacy in Scotland.

There are two main morning after pills available in the UK. 

  • Levonelle - effective for up to 72 hours or 3 days after unprotected sex. Contains the active ingredient levonorgestrel, which is a synthetic version of the human sex hormone progesterone.
  • EllaOne - effective for up to 120 hours after unprotected sex (5 days). Contains the active ingredient ulipristal acetate. This interferes with how progesterone works.

Neither pill is 100% effective, but both are more effective the sooner they are taken. The online service is not recommended for women who have already had unprotected sex.

This service is aimed at women who may want to have a standby pill in case of contraception failure.

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Morning After Pill

Morning after Pill treatment options

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    Levonelle

    Order on Monday to Friday until 3:30pm guarantees next day delivery options

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    Levonelle 1.5mg - Morning After Pill

    £3.99
    £6.00
    £12.50
    £19.95
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    ellaOne

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    ellaOne

    £23.50
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Overview

If you need the morning after pill, our online doctor and pharmacy services can assess, prescribe, dispense and deliver your medication. Complete an online assessment, making sure to answer every question as fully as you can. We will assess your suitability for the pill, and if approved, our pharmacy team will dispense and deliver the medication in discreet packaging.

About the morning after pill

The morning after pill is a common term for a tablet used as a form of emergency contraception. Where regular contraception has failed, emergency contraception can be used to prevent an unwanted pregnancy.

The tablet should be taken as soon as possible after sex. It acts to stop or delay ovulation. So if ovulation occurs before you take the pill, there is a risk you will become pregnant. 

How it works

As mentioned, the morning after pill works by delaying or stopping ovulation. That is to say, it delays the release of your egg. In addition to this, there are some additional effects which work to prevent pregnancy in case an egg is released. It makes it harder for sperm to reach the egg and also for the egg to implant to the wall of the uterus.

These three methods of action mean that emergency contraception is highly successful in stopping pregnancy. However, the sooner it is taken after sex, the more effective it is.

When can I take the morning after pill?

If you are at risk of unwanted pregnancy, the morning after pill should be taken as soon as possible after unprotected sex. Levonelle however, is not effective past 72 hours after sex, while EllaOne is not effective past 120 hours after sex. If you have missed these cut-offs, you should see your doctor or nurse for alternative options.

Levonelle is effective up to 72 hours (3 days) after sex but it is not effective if taken after this time. EllaOne is effective for longer - it can be taken up to 120 hours (5 days) after sex. 

What other options are there?

If you are too late to take Levonelle, you can see your GP to discuss fitting a contraceptive coil. This is also called the intrauterine device (IUD), another type of emergency contraception. This can be inserted up to 120 hours (5 days) after unprotected sex or contraceptive failure. This works to prevent fertilisation and is the most effective of the emergency contraceptive methods, however, it is more intrusive. 

You can also read more information on safe sex here. Using regular methods of contraception may also be advisable if you are sexually active and not already on the pill. 

Side effects of emergency contraception

The most common side effects of the morning after pill include:

  • Nausea
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Stomach ache
  • Breast tenderness

You may also experience some light bleeds, or 'spotting' after taking the pill. It might affect your menstrual cycle and cause your next period to be earlier or later. If your next period is more than 5 days late, you should take a pregnancy test to check if you are pregnant.

What if I vomit after taking the morning after pill?

If you vomit within 2 hours of taking it, another dose is required. This is because the medication may not have been sufficiently absorbed into your body to work properly. You should speak to your doctor or pharmacist if this has happened to you.

STIs and The Morning After Pill

The morning after pill will not prevent you from contracting sexually transmitted infections (STIs). If you require the morning after pill after sex without a condom and are worried you may have an STI, you can drop into a sexual health clinic near you.

FAQ

  • What is the Morning After Pill?

    The morning after pill is a method of emergency contraception for women who have had unprotected sex and wish to avoid the possibility of becoming pregnant.

  • How effective is the morning after pill?

    Levonelle is most effective when taken within 12 hours of unprotected sex, although it can be effective for up to 72 hours after sex. You should bear in mind, however, that this effectiveness decreases over time.
    Levonelle is thought to prevent:


    up to 95% of pregnancies if taken within 24 hours
    up to 85% if taken within 48 hours
    up to 58% if taken within 72 hours

  • Is it safe to take the morning after pill?

    The morning after pill is generally a well-tolerated medication, with few side effects.

  • What are the side effects of the morning after pill?

    The main side effects associated with the morning after pill are:

    • Nausea
    • Stomach pain or discomfort
    • Vomiting

    You should read the patient information leaflet for a full list of possible side effects.

  • Can I get the morning after pill for free?

    Yes. In Scotland, you can go to any pharmacy after an episode of unprotected sex, and request the morning after pill.

    Elsewhere in the UK, you can get the morning after pill for free from contraception clinics, as well as some pharmacies and most GPs.

    Read the NHS guide on where you can get the morning after pill.

  • Where can I get the morning after pill?

    You can get the morning after pill online, or from a number of contraception clinics, pharmacies and GP surgeries.

     

  • How much is the morning after pill?

    The morning after pill costs £12.50 online for Levonelle, or £23.95 for ellaOne.

  • How does the morning after pill work?

    The morning after pill works by modifying the activity of the natural hormone progesterone which is necessary for ovulation to occur. It does the following

    • Temporarily stops the release of an egg
    • Prevents fertilization
    • Prevents attachment of a fertilized egg to the uterus

  • Is the morning after pill 100% effective?

    No, the morning after pill is not guaranteed to be 100% effecitve. While it works in over 95% of cases if taken within 24 hours, there are cases where it is not effective.

  • What is the most effective morning after pill?

    Both Levonelle and ellaOne are very effective methods of emergency contraception. They are more effective if taken within 24 hours of unprotected sex.

  • How long after sex can you take the morning after pill?

    Levonelle can be taken up to 72 hours (3 days) after unprotected sex. EllaOne can be taken up to 120 hours (5 days) after unprotected sex. 

    Content Reviewed: 23/11/2020

Levonelle 1.5mg - Morning After Pill

Medication Simple Online Pharmacy
Brand x1 Tablet £12.50
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Generic x1 Tablet £3.99
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Generic x2 Single Doses (2 Tabs) £6.00
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Brand x2 Single Doses (2 Tabs) £19.95
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ellaOne

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30mg x1 £23.50
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Morning after Pill Treatment Comparison

LevonelleEllaOne
Effective up to72 hours after sex120 hours after sex
Effectiveness96-99% if taken within 24 hours98-99%
Affected by BMI?BMI over 26BMI over 30
Mechanism of ActionStops ovulationStops ovulation