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could i be pregnant?

By Anonymous September 24, 2009 - 9:33am
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hello, my name is michelle and im 17. Im on Ortho Cyclen birth control. Sunday and on Monday i missed both my pills, then on Tuesday i missed it again. Me and my boyfriend had sex Tuesday and i normally take my pill around 2:30pm instead i took it at 6 something after we had sex around 3-4. I had advice on here already that i have a high risk of being pregnant, but my question now is last month i started my period a few days late n i thought nothing of it, then this month i started spotting yesterday, but today im still kinda spotting but its really bright red and not heavy. My peroid anit suppost to start till sunday. Why would i be spotting? And what can cause spotting?

Add a Comment5 Comments

Hi Michelle,

Any time you miss pills, this can cause spotting. The birth control pills contain synthetic hormones that "mimic" the natural ones your body makes, and when you miss 3 pills within a week, your body thinks it should start "kicking in" the production of natural hormones (to supplement the lack of synthetic hormones), but then when you add back the synthetic hormones from your pill, your body then goes back to trying to prevent ovulation...and all of this back-and-forth can cause some spotting. You can see why...it's created a little shift in your body, and your period may be different this month: longer, shorter, lighter, heavier, or it may be late or occur sooner.

You did not mention if you doubled-up on your pills on Tuesday (from your missed pills from Sunday and Monday). Here is what it should have looked like:
Sunday--oops, missed pill
Monday--oops, missed pill
Tuesday--oops, pill Tuesday took late and take Sunday's missed pill
Wednesday--take Wednesday's pill and Monday's missed pill
Thursday--back to regular schedule

After you begin doubling-up, it is important to use back-up protection (condom) for the next 7 days. You did not mention if you and your boyfriend used a condom, but I'm assuming you did not? May I ask why, after you knew you missed your pills? This really does put you at increased risk for a pregnancy, unfortunately. As I'm sure you know, the pill is 99% effective when taken consistently and correctly every time; when you miss 1, 2, 3 or more pills, it can significantly decrease the effectiveness.

You may choose to use emergency contraception: Plan B or Plan B One Step, as it is effective up to 120 hours after unprotected sex (if you are over the age of 16 or 17; call your pharmacy before hand). If you are already pregnant, it does not harm the pregnancy.

September 24, 2009 - 12:09pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Alison Beaver)

the reason i did not use back up protection is beause i forgot i missed my pills i was in the moment and not thinking at the time.

September 24, 2009 - 12:41pm
(reply to Anonymous)

Yeah, that happens, unfortunately! The "heat of the moment" can be very powerful, and I hope next time you can make it more fun (and less stressful after-the-fact) by knowing your options: how to double-up on your pills if you forget to take them, have condoms available, and/or know about emergency contraception. You've got a lot of great choices if you ever miss pills, so I hope you can take advantage of these!

Are you considering going to the pharmacy for Plan B?

September 24, 2009 - 1:57pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Alison Beaver)

i didnt double up my pills...i threw them away and just took tuesday pill late after me and my boyfriend had sex.

September 24, 2009 - 12:39pm
(reply to Anonymous)

Do you still have the instructions that come with your pill pack? If not, be sure to keep a copy that comes with your next pack, as it explains step-by-step what to do if you miss pills. You never want to throw away pills and not take any (unless you miss 3 or more pills in-a-row, then you want to stop taking pills and start a NEW pack on your next specified "start date").

And, most importantly, anytime you miss a pill, remember to use a condom or other back-up method for 7 days. (Even just using the Withdrawal Method or "pull out" method can be better than nothing...just FYI).

Did my explanation of how to "double-up" make sense? If not, I am happy to explain it differently...the instructions can be confusing, but it's important that you know exactly what to do next time.

Take care!

September 24, 2009 - 2:00pm
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