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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » EXPERT ADVICE » Ask Scarleteen » Birth Control Timing

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Author Topic: Birth Control Timing
Member # 1071

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Hi guys, I was just wondering if anyone has any specific information on the reduced effectiveness of birth control when it's not taken at regular times. I take it every twenty four hours, but it's between the hours of 3pm and 12am. Is this too big a window, and could it be a reason why I've been feeling a bit more emotional? Earlier in the year, I was able to take it every day at about the same time, but it's been really difficult to do so nowadays. Thanks for your time!
Posts: 615 | From: New York | Registered: Aug 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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With birth control, you have about a 3 hour window to be taking it in for it to remain effective. If you're taking a low dose pill, it's a bit smaller than that.

A nine hour window is definitely too big. If you cannot take the pill around the same time everyday, you are really risking its effectivness and you can cause some wonkiness with your body by not taking the hormones consitently (that may or may not be the reaosn you're feeling emotional lately, in all likelihood, it may be having some effect, but is probably not the actual cause).

We wouldn't be able to tell you how much the effectiveness would go down by taking the pill in this way, because there's no way to measure it. All you should know is that by taking the pill inconsitently like this, you are risking the pill not being effective as birth control.

Is there any way you can take your pill pack with you and take the pills by a watch or phone alarm? That way, you'll be able to take them at the same time each day, no matter where you are or what you're doing.

If this is not working for you, it may be a good idea to look into an alternate hormonal method such as the NuvaRing (which you changed monthly) or the patch (which you change weekly).

aka dailicious
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Posts: 3382 | From: Denver, Colorado | Registered: Mar 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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There's a three hour window that BC can be taken in and still considered effective. For instance, if you take your pill normally at 12pm, taking it after 9am or before 3pm would still be okay. After that, it's considered a missed pill, and the cycle is compromised as far as pregnancy protection. I found that missing pills made for a really miserable cycle.

If you can, try setting an alarm on cell phone to help you remember, or try taking it when you first wake up or go to bed, if it's a consistent hour.


[ 05-23-2006, 12:51 AM: Message edited by: DarkChild717 ]

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