What to Do When Missing Your Birth Control


Dr. Taraneh Shirazian, assistant professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at NYU Langone Medical Center, recognizes that it’s possible and likely to accidentally miss a dose of your birth control pill. She clarifies that missing a day can affect the effectiveness of the pill in preventing a pregnancy, as the ovulation usually suppressed by the birth control could occur. Dr. Shirazian suggests taking the missed pill as soon as possible and assures that it is safe to take two pills in a day if needed, but that it shouldn’t become a habit. When missing two pills in a row, Dr. Shirazian warns of the chance of heavy bleeding and recommends taking two pills for two days in a row to make up for the missed doses. She also suggests using other birth control methods such as condoms for the rest of your cycle. If any confusion or strange symptom arise, scheduling an appointment with your doctor is the best thing to do.

For Further Reading

Planned Parenthood is a great resource for any birth control-related questions or concerns. Check out this quiz on the PP website that can help in deciding what to do when missing a dose of the birth control pill.


Discussion Question

Do you feel like you were taught enough about birth control, or do you still have a lot of unanswered questions about it?   


Action Item

Planned Parenthood is an important resource for women all over the country. Find small ways to get involved and support their valuable work here.


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