What is contraception and where can I get it?
Contraception helps to stop unwanted pregnancy.
If you or a sexual partner could get pregnant and don’t want to, then it’s a good idea to use contraception when you have sex.
Condoms are one type of contraception. You can order them for free. They will also help to protect you from getting and passing on STIs when you have sex.
There are lots of other types of contraception to choose from too. But no other types of contraception help protect you from STIs.
Some people prefer to use condoms and another type of contraception.More about contraception and where to get it.
What is emergency contraception and where can I get it?
Emergency contraception is a way of helping to stop pregnancy if something goes wrong. Maybe a condom split or came off, or you forgot your usual contraception.
There are 2 different types of emergency contraception – pills and the emergency copper coil (IUD).
The emergency coil is very effective at stopping pregnancy but it might not always be possible to get it in time, or you might prefer to take a pill.
An emergency pill has the best chance of working the sooner you take it. It works by stopping the release of an egg. It won’t work if you take the pill after you have released an egg. So some people will still get pregnant even after taking an emergency pill.
You might know emergency pills by their brand names like Levonelle or ellaOne, or you might have heard it called Plan B.
More about emergency contraception and where to get it.More about emergency contraception and where to get it.
How does pregnancy happen?
Pregnancy happens when sperm from a penis joins with an egg. Once you’ve started your periods, you release an egg about once a month, but sometimes it might be earlier or later than this.
It’s possible to get pregnant before you have your first period because your body will release an egg before you have your period.
You have the highest chance of getting pregnant just before or after your body releases an egg.
But it’s possible to get pregnant at any time in your menstrual cycle if you have penis in vagina sex without using a condom or other contraception. This is because:
- Your body doesn’t always release an egg at the same time each month
- Sperm can live in the body for up to 7 days
You can’t get pregnant from:
Can you get pregnant if your partner pulls out before they come?
The pull-out method is where a partner pulls their penis out of the vagina before they ejaculate (come).
This is not a very reliable way of stopping pregnancy.
The person with the penis has to know that they’re about to come and have the self-control to pull out. This can be hard to do.
Even if a partner pulls out, there is a chance that some semen (cum) could come out of the penis before ejaculation.
It’s usually advised that a more reliable type of contraception is used.
If you’ve had sex without a condom and a partner has pulled out, you may want to consider using emergency contraception.
Can you get pregnant from fingering?
You’re extremely unlikely to get pregnant from someone fingering your vulva or vagina.
This could only happen if you or someone else had semen (cum) on their hands or fingers and then fingered you. Even then, the chance of pregnancy is very low.
If you or a partner get semen on your hands, wash your hands with warm soapy water before touching your vulva or vagina.
It’s a good idea to wash hands before touching a partners’ genitals anyway to avoid passing on any germs.
If you’re feeling worried, it might be that emergency contraception is advised.
Can you get pregnant the first time you have sex?
Yes. If a penis goes in your vagina or has contact with your vulva (the area around your vagina) and you don’t use a condom or other contraception then there’s a chance you could get pregnant.
It’s also possible to get pregnant even if your partner didn’t come or pulled out before coming.
Can you get pregnant if you have sex during your period?
Yes. It’s possible to get pregnant at any time in your menstrual cycle if you have penis in vagina sex without using a condom or other contraception.
For most people, most of the time, the chances of pregnancy are lower when you’re having your period. But periods and ovulation (releasing an egg) can be unpredictable.
So you could get pregnant even when you’re having your period because:
- Your body might release an egg earlier than usual
- Sperm can live in the body for up to 7 days
What if I think I'm pregnant?
If it’s been less than 5 days since the sex you’re worried about, you can get emergency contraception.
If you think you could be pregnant and you don’t want to be, it can make you feel very worried.
It’s a good idea to do a pregnancy test to find out. It can feel scary to do a test, but it will help you know what’s going on and what your choices are.
If you have regular periods and your period is late, you can do a pregnancy test from the first day that it’s late.
If you’re not sure when your period is due or it’s not due for a while, you can do a pregnancy test from day 21 after the sex you’re worried about.
You can buy a pregnancy test from a pharmacy, supermarket or some budget shops like Poundland. All tests with a CE mark on the pack are reliable, you don’t need an expensive test.
You can get a free test at asexual health clinic..