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» Got Questions? Get Answers. » EXPERT ADVICE » Ask Scarleteen » The Pill + Antibiotics

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Author Topic: The Pill + Antibiotics
Amy A
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I have a few questions.

1) How much do antibiotics affect the pill? My doctor prescribed me some tetracyclines, which I know decrease the effectiveness of the pill. I just can't find out how much anywhere (and the pharmacy wasn't helpful).

I don't feel comfortable relying on just condoms, but I would feel better knowing the pill is still somewhat working.

2) Would it be worth using spermicide while I'm taking the antibiotics too?

3) My boyfriend is really bad about remembering to hold the base of the condom when he withdraws. I'll remind him again, but I'm not really sure what holding the base involves. Are you supposed to make a seal with your hand so that nothing runs out? Or just hold it with a finger or two to stop it from slipping?

Posts: 23 | From: San Diego | Registered: Sep 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
September
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Antibiotics do not render the pill completely ineffective. By all accounts, you should still be protected pretty well, just not quite at the level you usually are. But, we cannot give you an exact percentage.

If you're not comfortable with this lowered protection, you also have the option of simply not engaging in the kind of activities that can pose a pregnancy risk. You'll only be taking the antibiotic for a limited amount of time, and once you start the next pack of pills, you can rely on the full level of protection again.

As far as withdrawing goes, it's really about making sure that the condom stays put and doesn't slip off.

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Johanna
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