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18.02.2019 Health & Fitness

Stop Abusing Emergency Contraceptive Pills (ECPs)

By Irene Korama Obeng || Trained Midwife 
Stop Abusing Emergency Contraceptive Pills (ECPs)
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Emergency Contraceptive Pills (ECPs) are hormonal birth control pills that are taken within 72 hours of unprotected sexual intercourse to prevent pregnancy.

They must be taken after an emergency sexual intercourse (eg rape) or failed birth control method (eg broken condom during sex)

DRUG COMPOSITION AND ACTION

The main composition of ECPs is levonorgestrel.

Levonorgestrel is a progestin hormone which is known to prevent pregnancy by

1. Suppressing ovulation( preventing the release of an egg).

2. Thickening of cervical mucus to inhibit sperm movement

3. Altering the lining of the uterus to prevent the implantation of a fertilized ovum.

Some brands of ECPs in Ghana includes; postinor 2, levon 2, contra-72, Lydia and others.

SIDE EFFECTS OF ECPs

Headache, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, altered menstrual cycle( early or delayed) spotting or irregular vaginal bleeding, mood swings etc.

ABUSE

The abuse of ECPs is on an alarming rise.

Even though there is no documented effects of ECPs on fertility, producers of ECPs have cautioned the public not to use it as a family planning method.

Yet still ,many ladies are ignorant and or adamant and consume these pills as much as twice or thrice in a menstrual cycle (a month) which is very alarming.

ALERT

Dear ladies, it is very important to note that, our complex reproductive system is mostly compromised due to several environmental factors.

Continuous and prolonged exposure to ECPs is detrimental to our health. The constant alterations which our system undergoes anytime we consume these pills go a long way to affect the normal functional process which is dangerous and have future implications

Risk factors of ectopic pregnancy includes use of ECPs

Also, irregular menstrual cycle(which is one of its side effects) is one of the major cause of infertility.

Save yourself and your reproductive system from the harsh hormonal alterations of these pill.

SAFETY

Planning pregnancy is important and must be done safely to prevent any future implications.

Even though most couples plan their sexual activities, they consciously have unprotected sex and later fall on ECPs as a family planning method which is medically unadvisable.

Sexually active couples are advised to use more effective and safer family planning methods such as condoms, daily pills, injectables, implants and many others which have a considerable milder effects on the reproductive system than ECPs.

STOP ABUSING EMERGENCY CONTRACEPTIVE PILLS.

OPT FOR A SAFER FAMILY PLANNING METHOD.

USE ECPs IN EMERGENCY CASES ONLY.

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