An Unwanted 72 Pill is an emergency pill taken to avoid unwanted pregnancy within 72 hours of unprotected sex. It is an effective birth control method. It contains levonorgestrel as an active ingredient.
Unwanted 72 is not advised to be taken as a regular birth control pill as it can hamper the regular cycle of hormones. It does not work if the pregnancy has already taken place, and it does not protect the user from sexually transmitted diseases.
Mechanism of Action of Unwanted 72 Pill
1) When the active ingredient (levonorgestrel) gets into the circulation system, it obstructs the development of luteinising hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH). These hormones help in the development of eggs and the release of eggs from the ovaries.
2) In case the ovary has already released the egg, this pill prevents the fertilisation of the egg and sperm.
3) If the fertilisation has already occurred, it prevents the implantation (attachment) of the zygote to the uterus.
Unwanted 72 Side Effects on Periods
- Disturbs the normal menstrual cycle
- Increases the bleeding tendency
- Causes withdrawal bleeding (bleeding before the period’s expected date)
- Can lead to more painful periods
- Nausea and Vomiting
- Pain in abdomen
- Change in the normal hormonal cycle (menstruation)
- Uterine bleeding
- Tender breasts
How Unwanted 72 Effects the next periods
1) The effect of the emergency pill depends on the next menstrual cycle’s timing and when it has been taken.
2) The earlier the pill is taken, the earlier the next menstrual cycle.
3) If the emergency pill is taken once in the first three weeks of the monthly period, periods might come sooner than expected.
4) Emergency pills consumed before the fertile day, i.e., the 14th day of the cycle (LH surge), do not allow ovulation (release of the egg from the ovary) and increase the chances of early occurrence of next periods.
5) The emergency pill consumed after the ovulation (release of the egg from the ovary) causes no change in the menstrual cycle.
6) If the emergency pill is taken in the fourth week of the monthly periods, it is seen that the periods will come at the usual time, but there will be more bleeding than usual and will be for a longer time.
7) If the periods still don’t come after taking the pill or for more than a week from the expected date, consult a gynaecologist as there are chances of failure of the pill.
8) Consult the gynaecologist if there is heavy vaginal bleeding after taking the emergency pill.
9) If there is vomiting within 3 hours after taking the emergency pill, take another pill as soon as possible.
- James Trussell, January 2007; Bleeding after use of the levonorgestrel regimen of emergency contraception: concordance between women's reports of their menstrual periods and an objective algorithm - https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17161121/
- Alisa Goldberg, James Trussell, Melissa Hays, April 2006; Bleeding patterns after use of levonorgestrel emergency contraceptive pills - https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16531171/