Advice, services & products to help support women's health
1. The emergency contraceptive pill
You may be worried about becoming pregnant if you've had unprotected sex or your usual contraception has failed. One of the options available to you could be the morning after pill.
Your morning after pill options
The emergency hormonal contraceptives available at Boots are for women who've had unprotected sex within the last five days. Our pharmacist will advise if one of the morning after pills is suitable for you after helping you understand all of your options. The sooner you take the morning after pill after unprotected sex, the greater the chances of avoiding pregnancy. The morning after pill is intended for emergency use and should not be used on a regular basis.The following morning after pill options are available at our Pharmacy :
Active ingredient: Ulipristal Acetate
Minimum age: No minimum age
Timing: Can be taken up to 120 hours (five days) after unprotected sex
- Levonelle One Step
Active ingredient: Levonorgestrel
Minimum age: 16
Timing: Can be taken up to 72 hours (three days) after unprotected sex
2. What is the Pharmacy Period Delay Clinic for?
Having your period can be annoying, especially if you’ve got a big event coming up, such as a festival, holiday or exams. At times like these, you may want to think about delaying your period for a short while – and our Period Delay Online Clinic can help by offering a discreet and convenient way to delay your period for up to 17 days.
Through this online clinic, you can access prescription-only period delay tablets called Utovlan (norethisterone), which will postpone your period until you stop taking the tablets.
If you already have a prescription for Utovlan (norethisterone) from your GP, we can dispense it.
Who can use this clinic?
You can use this clinic if you are female, aged 16 to 54*, and not using the contraceptive pill or any other hormonal contraception (other eligibility criteria apply).
If you’re aged 55 or over, are still menstruating, and want to delay your periods, we recommend you speak to your GP.
What is Utovlan (norethisterone)?
Utovlan (norethisterone) is a prescription-only medicine which will delay your period. It contains the active ingredient norethisterone which works in a similar way to the naturally occurring hormone progesterone. It can delay your period for up to 17 days, or until you stop taking the tablets.
While you’re taking the tablets, your period will be delayed, but once you stop taking them, it should start within three days. You’ll need to take one Utovlan (norethisterone) tablet three times a day, starting three days before your period is due and continuing for no more than 14 days afterwards (17 days in total).
Utovlan (norethisterone) is the only period delay treatment you can get through our Period Delay Online Clinic. Please speak to your GP if you want to know about other options for delaying your period, or if you’re currently taking the contraceptive pill.
Are there any side effects to taking Utovlan?
Utovlan (norethisterone) can cause side effects, including nausea and skin problems, but not everyone will get them. If you live with epilepsy, migraines, asthma, heart or kidney problems, you may find your symptoms are worse while taking Utovlan (norethisterone).
Utovlan (norethisterone) can also increase the risk of developing blood clots, so take extra care when flying or taking a long journey. Taking regular breaks to move around during journeys may help prevent blood clots, but if you’re worried, please speak to your GP.
For more information on the side effects of Utolvlan (norethisterone), please read the patient information leaflet. If you experience any severe side effects, you should stop taking Utovlan and speak to your local pharmacist or your GP straightaway.