In honor of Sex Ed Week of Action (September 20th-26th), we’ll be featuring a “Top 5″ each day.
The condom breaking is not the only explanation for an unexpected pregnancy. There are a number of reasons why birth control fails. Here are five common scenarios you should know about.
5 Reasons Birth Control Fails
- You forgot to take the Pill, or you took it at the wrong time of day. The pill works best when taken on time, every day. Anytime you miss a pill your risk of pregnancy increases. Check out this chart which explains what to do about missed pills.
- Your method of birth control takes up to seven days to become effective and you didn’t know it. The Pill, the Ring, the Patch, or the Mirena IUD, for example, can all take up to a week to become effective if started later than five days after the start of your period. A back-up method should be used during that time.
- You’re taking medications that reduce the effectiveness of your birth control. These medications can include: the antibotic Rifampin which treats tuberculosis; anticonvulsants/anti-seizure medications; and the anti-fungal medication griseofulvin. Birth control may also alter or interact with other medications.
- You don’t understand when you are fertile. As we debunked earlier this week, some women believe they cannot get pregnant during their period. Others may stop taking birth control, or may not use birth control during a time they believe they are “safe.” Knowing when your fertile days are can help you avoid a pregnancy.
- You’re using your birth control incorrectly. Unfortunately, user error is a major factor for failure. We’ve heard of people washing their NuvaRing off in the shower, inverting diaphragms, and even using oil-based lubricants with condoms. Read and follow the directions for your birth control, and if you have any questions, call us at 1-800-230-PLAN.