Your contraception guide
What if I'm on the pill and I'm sick or have diarrhoea?
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Methods of contraception
Which is best for me?
- Things to consider
- Methods that may help heavy or painful periods
- Methods you need to think about every day
- Methods you need to think about every time you have sex
- Methods that last months or years
- Methods that protects against STIs (sexually transmitted infections)
- Permanent methods
Worries and questions
- Using contraception effectively
- I've had unprotected sex
- Contraception after a baby
Questions about the pill
- Missed pills and extra pills
- Being on the pill
- Periods and the pill
- The pill for men
It depends on when and for how long you're being sick or have diarrhoea.
If you're sick (vomit) within 2 hours of taking your contraceptive pill, it probably will not have been absorbed by your body.
You should take another pill straight away.
As long as you're not sick again, you're still protected against pregnancy.
Take your next pill at the usual time.
If you continue to be sick or have diarrhoea for more than 24 hours, this can mean your protection against pregnancy is affected.
Sickness or diarrhoea for more than 24 hours
If you can, you should carry on taking your pills at the normal time, but you may need to use extra contraception, such as condoms.
If you continue to be sick, or have diarrhoea for more than 24 hours, count each day with sickness or diarrhoea as a day that you have missed your pill.
For advice on what to do if you have missed a pill, see:
- What should I do if I miss a pill (combined pill)?
- What should I do if I miss a pill (progestogen-only pill)?
Read more about what to do if you have diarrhoea and vomiting.
Page last reviewed: 30/01/2018
Next review due: 30/01/2021