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I ran out of my birth control and was not able to pick up my prescription over a week after I finished my last pill because of Covid-19. Can I start the new pack more than a week after I finished my period and ran out of my pills or should I wait until my next period to start again?

You can start your new pack of birth control pills as soon as you feel like it. You don’t need to wait for your next period to start. But depending on what kind of pill you take, it might not be effective at preventing pregnancy until you’ve taken it for a full week. Read below to find out what to do, or check out this amazing tool to find out what to do if you missed one or more birth control pills. 

First things first, find out whether the pills you take are combination pills (that contain the 2 hormones estrogen and progestin) or progestin-only pills. It might say which kind it is on the pill pack, or you may have to Google it. You could also call your doctor or nurse, or the pharmacy where you got the pills, to be extra sure.  

 If you take combination birth control pills, which is what most people use, then take your first pill in the pack on whichever day you like. If you start taking combination pills within 5 days after your period starts, you’ll be protected from pregnancy right away. But if you start combination pills any other time, you need to take the pill for 7 days before you’re protected from pregnancy. So use another method of birth control — like a condom — if you have penis-in-vagina sex during the first week on the pill. After the 7 days are over, your pill is back to being super effective at preventing pregnancy.

If you take progestin-only pills, you’ll be protected from pregnancy after you’ve been back on them for 2 days. But remember, with progestin-only pills, you need to make sure you’re taking the pill around the same time every day if you want to be protected from pregnancy.

And voilà! After either 1 week or 2 days, you’ll be right back on track. 

Tags: birth control pills, menstruation, period, pill