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Some Reasons the Pill Could Lose Its Effectiveness

Of all the birth control options, aside from abstinence, the pill is the best choice if you want to prevent pregnancy. It claims to be about 97 to 99 percent effective, which is just about perfect. Still, some women say they have accidentally gotten pregnant while using the pill, even though they used it correctly (with no missed pills). So how can that be? What many women don't know is that there are certain reasons the pill can lose effectiveness, so it's possible to become pregnant while on the pill if . . .

  • You take the pill at different times of the day. In order to be most effective, you should take each pill at the same time every day, whether it be in the morning, lunch time, before bed, or whenever. To help you remember, write yourself notes or set your alarm.
  • You're sick. Illness can affect the way your body works and the way medications work. Also, if you vomit or have diarrhea, the hormones in the pill may leave your body.

To see more reasons why the pill could lose its effectiveness, just


  • You're taking other medications. Certain sedatives, antifungal meds such as griseofulvin, and antibiotics such as penicillin or tetracycline can reduce the pill's effectiveness.
  • You're taking an herbal supplement such as St. John's Wort. Herbal and over-the-counter drugs can affect your pill, so if you have any concerns, tell your gyno what you're taking so they can let you know if you need to use a backup form of birth control.


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