93: We have to talk about this type of contraception…
If you’ve been anywhere near the news or social media, you’ve probably heard about what’s going on in with the law changes in Texas (which in my personal opinion is absolutely despicable), making it illegal to get an abortion after 6 weeks. Given this, I thought it was timely to chat about Emergency contraception.
Most people even going through fertility treatment will only find out they are pregnant at 5 weeks, so that leaves you with a grand total of 1 week to find a clinic and go through the process – and that’s in a planned scenario and isn’t realistic.
It’s even worse for those of us with PCOS and irregular cycles, as it isn’t hugely out of the ordinary for many of us would think anything of it if our periods were just a few days late. I just had a patient who didn’t realise she was 12.5 weeks pregnant because she’d had irregular cycles in the past and just thought her cycles had regressed again.
I’m so angry for the people of Texas. Given that 1 in 4 of childbearing people in the US will have had an abortion before the age of 45, this is this is disastrous for their rights in Texas (and potentially other states as a flow on effect). I hope for the health rights of other Americans and other countries’ rights that this isn’t replicated. As someone who works with people with PCOS day in day out and speaks to people all about advocating for their health – there is nothing more infuriating than people not having bodily autonomy.
In New Zealand, the Growing Up in New Zealand, which was a massive longitudinal study found that 40% of childbearing parents reported their pregnancies were unplanned. But regardless of where you live and abortion laws, there are many reasons why we’d need to emergency contraceptive. After many years of using the ECP myself, I was really shocked a few years ago when I learnt how it actually worked! And most importantly, when it wasn’t likely to work and what you could do instead.
So in this episode, I really wanted to give you the 411 on all things emergency contraception, what it is, how it works, what counts as an emergency contraceptive, how PCOS affects this, how weight affects the emergency contraceptive and much more.
If you’ve listened to any of my podcasts, you’ll know how much I love having you informed so you can make the best decision for you. So regardless of whether or not this is relevant for you, I definitely recommend listening to this because you never know when you may be in a situation where an emergency contraceptive is needed OR when someone you know might need some advice on one!
This episode is for you if:
- You’ve been worried about accidentally falling pregnant
- You want to learn more about emergency contraception
- You’re on the copper IUD
- You want to know how weight can affect the use of emergency contraception
- You’ve found out you’re pregnant but you can’t viably continue to this pregnancy for whatever reason and are trying to figure out your options
Some things we cover in this episode:
- What emergency contraception actually is
- What the statistics around emergency contraception use show
- What are the most common types of emergency contraception
- The mechanisms that emergency contraception use to stop pregnancy
- Weight and emergency contraception
Resources and References:
- Mechanism of Action of Ulipristal Acetate for Emergency Contraception: A Systematic Review
- Choosing the right type of emergency contraception
- Mechanism of action of levonorgestrel emergency contraception
- My Book: Getting Pregnant with PCOS
Links to our programs:
44: Your Guide to Birth Control (Part 1): Hormonal Birth ControlBrowse all podcasts