Skip Nav
What Is an Open Marriage?
I'm in an Open Marriage . . . but We're Not Sleeping With Anyone Else
Real Weddings
The Mermaid Details in This Engagement Shoot Will Make You Dream of Life Under the Sea
Vagina Facts
18 Vagina Facts You Really, Really Need to Know
Wedding Flower Trends 2018
Brides, It's Time to Ditch the Flower Crown For These Trendier Pieces in 2018

I Forgot to Take My Birth Control Pill, What Should I Do?

I Forgot to Take My Birth Control; What Should I Do?

One of the complaints we hear from women about the birth control pill is that they have a hard time remembering to take it every day. So what happens if you forget? Being even 12 hours late taking your birth control pill could increase your chances of getting pregnant. If you miss any of the first 21 pills in your pack, you need to use a backup method of birth control (condoms) until you have taken seven consecutive days of pills.

  • If you miss one pill: Take it as soon as you remember. Take your next pill at the regular time.
  • If you realize when taking your pill that you skipped one: Take the pill you skipped and the new one together. It's OK to take two pills at once.
  • If you miss two pills: Take two pills each day for the next two days, and then go back to one pill each day at your usual time. You could get pregnant if you have unprotected sex for the next seven days, so make sure to use a backup method.
  • If you forget to take one pill during the third week of your pill pack: Finish the pills for that week, skip the last week (inactive pills), and begin a new pack. Understand that you probably won't have another period until the fourth week of this new pill pack. Use a backup method of birth control until you have taken seven consecutive days of pills.
  • If you forget three or more pills: Call your doctor for advice. She may suggest to take one pill daily until Sunday and then start a new pack, or to discard the rest of the pill pack and start over with a new pack that same day. Be sure to use a backup method of birth control each time you have sex because you are no longer protected against pregnancy. After you've had seven days of pills, then you are protected against pregnancy.

Advice: It's always a good idea to talk to your doctor if you have any questions. If you think there could be a chance that you are pregnant (and you don't want to be), emergency contraception (Plan B) is always an option. In the US, the morning-after pill is now available over the counter without a prescription for all ages.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Mark Popovich
5 Dating Texts to Save in Your Phone Right Now
How to Ask Friends Hard Questions
Am I Settling in My Relationship?
What Future Female Generations Need to Know
Things I Wish I Knew Before Getting a Divorce
10 Ways to Fall in Love With Your Partner All Over Again
Best Weed For Your Zodiac Sign
Do You Have to Have Sex With Your Husband?
Signs a Guy Is Interested in You
What's the Best Dating App?
Common Myths About Men
Is He Unhappy in the Relationship?
From Our Partners
Latest Love
All the Latest From Ryan Reynolds