Oral contraception is very effective at preventing unwanted pregnancy and they are the most successful form of contraception available.
The pill is easy to take and it must be taken at the same time daily. Most pills require a full month of use, a pill daily for three weeks followed by a week’s break, before they can be relied upon for birth control. A woman will take the pill at the start of her menstrual cycle. The effectiveness of the pill is affected if a woman does not use it correctly.
Most contraceptive pills use a combination of oestrogen and progestogen, which is why it is often referred to as the combined pill, and it protects against pregnancy in the following ways:
- Thickening the mucus in the cervix, making it more difficult for sperm to reach an egg
- Altering the lining of the womb and making it less prone to allow an egg to embed itself and commence development
- Preventing ovulation during the menstrual cycle