To use the minipill:
- Consult your health care provider about a starting date. Make sure you have a backup method of birth control available if necessary.
- Pick a time to regularly take the pill. It's important to take the minipill at the same time every day. If you take the minipill more than three hours later than usual, avoid sex or use a backup method of birth control for at least two days.
- Be cautious with missed pills. If you miss a minipill, take the missed pill as soon as you remember — even if it means taking two pills in one day. Use a backup method of birth control for at least two days. If you've had unprotected sex, consult your health care provider about emergency contraception.
- Don't take breaks between packs. Always have your next pack ready before you finish your current pack. Unlike combination birth control pills, minipill packs don't contain a week of inactive pills.
If you're taking antibiotics or you experience vomiting or diarrhea while using the minipill, use a backup method of birth control. If your bleeding is particularly heavy or lasts for more than eight days, consult your health care provider.
Nov. 26, 2014
- Hatcher RA, et al. Contraceptive Technology. 20th ed. New York, N.Y.: Ardent Media; 2011:249.
- Cunningham FG, et al. Williams Obstetrics. 23rd ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2010. http://www.accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=46. Accessed Sept. 27, 2014.
- Kaunitz AM. Progestin-only pills (POPs) for contraception. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Sept. 27, 2014.
- Espey E, et al. Effect of progestin vs. combined oral contraceptive pills on lactation: A double-blind randomized controlled trial. Obstetrics and Gynecology. 2012;119:5.
- Harms RW (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. October 16, 2014.