More U.S. women using the ‘morning-after’ pill -report


CDC’s findings showed the reasons for emergency contraception use varied depending on race and education levels.

Hispanics and blacks were more likely than whites to report using the drug after unprotected sex. More white women said they used it because they were worried their other birth control method had failed, CDC said.

Those with at least some college education were more likely to use the pill than those with a high school education or less, according to the report, which is based on data from the CDC’s National Survey of Family Growth.

“The women who are less likely to have access to healthcare are more likely to say ‘I didn’t use another method, and I turned to emergency contraception to protect myself,’” said Allina. Some women may choose to use it occasionally if they cannot afford other methods, she added.

What Are the Disadvantages of the Morning-After Pill (Emergency Contraception)?

You may have some undesirable side effects while using the morning-after pill. But many women use Plan B One-Step, ella, and Next Choice with few or no problems.

Nausea and throwing up are the most common side effects. Less than 1 out of 4 women feel sick when they take them. You can use anti-nausea medicine one hour before taking emergency contraception if you are concerned about being nauseous. Many women also find it helpful to take the emergency contraception pills with a full stomach.
Other side effects of the morning-after pill may include

breast tenderness
irregular bleeding

If you use the morning-after pill frequently, it may cause your period to be irregular. Emergency contraception should not be used as a form of ongoing birth control because there are other forms of birth control that are a lot more effective.

Overall, the number of women using regular birth control pills has remained flat over time while the use of injections, patches and intrauterine devices has grown, CDC reported in separate findings. The number of women whose partners have used condoms also rose, data showed.

That trend may reflect increased wariness among Americans to have children amid the 2007-2009 economic recession, the effects of which are still being felt by many, according to the Guttmacher Institute, which also tracks contraception use.

“At the same time, it can make it harder for people to have access to birth control because of costs,” especially for disadvantaged women at higher risk for unintended pregnancies, said Lawrence Finer of the reproductive research group.

How Effective Is the Morning-After Pill (Emergency Contraception)?
Emergency contraception can be started up to 120 hours — five days — after unprotected intercourse. The sooner it is started, the better it works.

Emergency contraception is also known as the morning-after pill, emergency birth control, backup birth control, and by the brand names Plan B One-Step, ella, and Next Choice. Plan B One-Step and Next Choice reduce the risk of pregnancy by 89 percent when started within 72 hours after unprotected intercourse. They continue to reduce the risk of pregnancy up to 120 hours after unprotected intercourse, but they are less effective as time passes.

You need to use the morning-after pill to prevent pregnancy after each time you have unprotected intercourse. The morning-after pill will not prevent pregnancy for any unprotected intercourse you may have after taking the pills. If you do not have your period within three weeks after taking emergency contraception, you may want to consider taking a pregnancy test.

The morning-after pill offers no protection against sexually transmitted diseases or infections. You may want to consider STD testing if there is a possibility that unprotected sex put you at risk.

That could change in the wake of Obama’s healthcare overhaul, added Finer, who oversees the institute’s domestic research.

The law aims to extend health insurance to more people, including lower income Americans, and requires insurers to cover prescription birth control without a co-payment.



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