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5 Common Questions You Have About Emergency Contraception, Answered

This is a sponsored feature. All opinions are 100% from Her Campus.

Today, women have a number of trusted contraceptive methods to choose from, but accidents happen. You can never be too prepared, especially when it comes to contraceptive failure. The key: keep emergency contraception on-hand so you can alleviate the panic that comes after unprotected sex or birth control failure. Plus, being prepared in these moments will empower you to feel in control of the situation and your sexual health!

Vagisil has been a leader in women’s intimate health for over 40 years and recently launched Preventeza emergency contraception so that everyone can have access.

“At Vagisil, we are committed to helping educate, and thereby reduce the shame associated with vaginal and sexual health, including emergency contraception, and to help women gain a better understanding of ECs so they can take control of a stressful moment,” said Keech Combe Shetty, SHEO of Vagisil. “It’s my mission to dispel the myth that emergency contraceptives are only used in moments of stress and panic, instead I want to empower women to take ownership of their reproductive health without shame, and be prepared, not panicked – while preventing pregnancy before it starts.”

Vagisil found that 1-in-2 women may actually need to use emergency contraceptive in their lifetimes – and if that’s the case, we can assume a lot of women have questions about how exactly this whole situation works and what goes down. But don’t worry, one woman’s question is every woman’s question, and we have the full details on what you need to know about this emergency contraceptive. 

So, how does it work?

Preventeza contains a hormone used in many birth control pills, just at a higher dose. That hormone, levonorgestrel, works mainly by stopping the release of an egg from the ovary. Levonorgestrel tablet 1.5 mg is an emergency contraceptive that helps prevent pregnancy after birth control failure or unprotected sex.

What does Preventeza not do?

It doesn’t work if you are already pregnant, so it won’t affect an existing pregnancy. It also doesn’t protect against HIV infection and other sexually transmitted diseases.

When should I use it?

The rule here is that the sooner you take an emergency contraceptive, the better it works. You should use Preventeza within three days of unprotected sex, or if your regular birth control was used incorrectly or failed. But, keep in mind that it is a backup method of preventing pregnancy and shouldn’t be used as regular birth control.

But is it actually effective?

If you use Preventeza as directed, it can significantly decrease the chance that you will get pregnant. About 7 out of every 8 women who would have gotten pregnant will not become pregnant. You’ll know that it worked when you get your next period, but if you’re concerned you can always get a pregnancy test or follow up with your doctor. Again, Preventeza can be taken within three days (72 hours) after unprotected sex has occurred, yet is most effective the sooner it is taken.

Will I have weird side effects?

Side effects may include changes in your period, nausea, lower stomach (abdominal) pain, tiredness, headache, dizziness, and breast tenderness. If you experience severe abdominal pain, you should seek immediate medical attention because you may have an ectopic pregnancy. 

When it comes to emergency contraception, you’re totally not alone and it’s OK to have questions about the process! If you want to continue the conversation, Vagisil has also launched a #WeAre1in2 campaign to raise awareness of the fact that 1-in-2 women may need to use emergency contraception. You can show your solidarity with women being in control of their reproductive health by using #WeAre1in2 on social media!

Plus, now that you’re educated on all things Preventeza, we hope this will lead to action. When you buy Preventeza at Preventeza.com, you’ll get a second one free to keep for yourself or give to a friend, so she can be prepared, not panicked. Preventeza is also sold over the counter at Rite Aid, Kroger and online, including Amazon, so you have plenty of choices the next time you need a backup option that’s got your back.

Gina was formerly the Beauty & Culture Editor at Her Campus, where she oversaw content and strategy for the site's key verticals. She was also the person behind @HerCampusBeauty, and all those other glowy selfies you faved. She got her start in digital media as a Campus Correspondent at HC Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, where she graduated in 2017 with degrees in English and Theater. Now, Gina is an LA-based writer and editor, and you can regularly find her wearing a face mask in bed and scrolling through TikTok.