Did you have unprotected sex? Did your regular birth control fail? Ella is here to help! Ella is a prescription emergency contraception pill that helps prevent pregnancy. Women are encouraged to take Ella as soon as possible after unsafe sex or after your traditional birth control fails. Ella can be effective up to five days (120 hours) after unprotected sex. The risk of Ella include potential nausea and becoming less effective.
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Does Ella Have Hormones?
Ella is a nonhormonal pill. Ulipristal is a nonhormonal drug that blocks key effects of hormones needed for contraception. This is why you should avoid taking your hormonal contraception for five days after taking Ella because the hormones and hormone-blockers will counteract each other.
Is Ella More Effective Than Plan B?
Plan B is an over-the-counter contraceptive similar to Ella. However, Ella is proven to be more effective than Plan B because it can be taken longer after unprotected sex. Plan B is most effective within 72 hours after sex, while women can take Ella up to five days after sex. For both pills, the sooner you take it, the more effective it is.
Does Ella Prevent Implantation?
Ella is not an abortion pill, which means it does not prevent implantation of a fertilized egg from forming in the uterus. Ella works to delay ovulation, meaning the sperm never meets the egg and nothing is conceived, preventing pregnancy, not ending it.
What Else Should I Know Before Taking Ella?
It's important to check with your pharmacist or doctor before taking Ella. They will be aware of how your current medication may react with this pill. You should also avoid taking Ella if you are already pregnant, currently breastfeeding, or have already taken it once since your last period. You will know that Ella has worked properly when your next period begins. Ella is less effective the longer you wait to take it. If your period is more than seven days late, even if you have taken Ella, then you may be pregnant.
What Are Some Side Effects of Taking Ella?
Everyone reacts differently to medication, so you may not experience any side effects or have side effects that vary widely from mild to severe. A few common side effects include:
- Stomach pain
- Menstrual cramps
What Should You Be Aware of When Taking Ella?
There are a few considerations to keep in mind when taking Ella. If you feel nauseous and throw up within two hours of taking Ella, then it won't be effective and you will need to take it again. You shouldn't use your regular hormonal contraceptive (like birth control pills) for five days after using Ella. This will decrease the effectiveness of both Ella and your normal contraceptive. Instead, use a barrier contraceptive (like a condom) until five days have passed and then return to your normal routine.
Where Is Ella Available?
While Ella is considered more effective than other morning-after pills, you need a prescription to use it. Prescriptions for Ella are available at family planning clinics and community health centers. It should also be available at your local student health center. Most women need a prescription from their doctor to use Ella, but pharmacists in some states (like Alaska, Hawaii, Maine, and California) can prescribe it for you. Ella typically costs around $50, but that number can significantly decrease with your insurance coverage. Under the Affordable Care Act, many women are able to receive Ella at a reduced cost or at no cost at all. If you don't have insurance, check us out! We can help you find the right medication that you need.
How Does Ella Work?
Ella is a 30-mg dose of ulipristal acetate. It is not intended as long-term birth control or to be used effectively, and will not protect against future unplanned pregnancies. Ella is also not an abortion pill. This pill works to delay or prevent ovulation, reducing the risk of pregnancy in women who have had unprotected sex. Ella doesn't hurt your chances of getting pregnant again in the future, but is a valuable option if you don't want to get pregnant now.