Oral contraceptives are exceptionally good at preventing a pregnancy when they are used correctly. Unfortunately, this does not always represent the way that the pill is used in daily life. Missing a dose, taking the wrong medication at the same time or similar problems can reduce the efficacy of the pill. While your chances of getting pregnant on contraception are generally around 1 to 2 percent, this is only true if you used your medication perfectly each time. Because of this key problem, there is a chance that you could get pregnant if you do not use contraception perfectly.
Getting Pregnant on the Pill
The only way to prevent a pregnancy completely is to practice abstinence. In the real world, this is not always possible. Your best alternative is to use a combination of birth control methods. If you use the pill and condoms, you can prevent a pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. In addition, using a condom as well as the pill will help to reduce the chances that you could unintentionally become pregnant.
If you are one of the unlucky few who become pregnant while taking the pill, there are a few reasons why this could happen.
1. You Missed a Dose
One of the most common reasons for getting pregnant on the pill is from missing a dose. If you do not take your birth control pills every day, then your estrogen levels will drop to a level much lower than they should be. Depending on your medication, your doctor may recommend that you double up on your dose on the next day. In addition, you will need to use a back up form of birth control such as condoms until your estrogen levels are back to where they should be.
2. You Took the Pill at the Wrong Time
For your hormone levels to remain stable, you have to take the pill at the same time every day. If you wait too long, your hormonal levels could drop. You need to take the pill at the same time every day unless you want to risk getting pregnant.
3. You Took Seizure or Antibiotic Medication
Some medications are metabolized differently in the level. If you are taking antibiotics or seizure medication, it can effect how the pill is metabolized in your liver. This can end up causing your estrogen levels to fluctuate too much. You should always let your medical provider know which medications you are on so that they can tell you if it will reduce the effectiveness of your birth control pills.
4. You Drank Alcohol
Drinking alcohol is never a good idea when you are taking birth control pills. Alcohol is known to cause liver problems, which is one of the reasons why it can end up harming the way that birth control is absorbed and metabolized in your liver. While it may not always ruin the effectiveness of your birth control, it is a possibility. If you are going to drink, you should use condoms as well to make sure that you do not get pregnant.
What Happens If You Get Pregnant on the Pill?
You have to make sure that you take your pill at the same time every day according to your doctor’s instructions unless you want to get pregnant. If you do not, it is possible that you will become pregnant.
Initially, you may end up having a period that is lighter or later than normal. This could be due to the fluctuations in your estrogen levels, or you could be pregnant. If you are pregnant, you will most likely begin to experience signs of pregnancy within the first few weeks after you have missed your period. You may experience breast tenderness, increased urination or excessive fatigue. Morning sickness may start in the first trimester as well, so you may experience vomiting or nausea at any time of the day. Certain foods and odors may start to seem repellent.
If you think that you may be pregnant, you can take a home pregnancy test or have your doctor give you a more accurate blood test. The pill is unlikely to cause any side effects to the fetus, but you will obviously have to stop taking it if you are pregnant.