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how long does it take for a girl to get pregnant after having sex?

Pregnancy doesn’t start the day you have sex — it can take up to six days after sex for the sperm and egg to join and form a fertilized egg. Then, it can take three to four days for the fertilized egg to completely implant itself in the lining of the uterus. Pregnancy begins during implantation, when the hormones needed to support pregnancy are released.

The most common way people get pregnant is from penis-in-vagina sex. But if semen (cum) gets ON the vulva or near the vaginal opening, sperm cells can swim into the vagina and cause pregnancy — but this is way less common. The only way to be sure of a pregnancy is to take a pregnancy test. You can purchase a home pregnancy test at drugstores or you can go to your local Planned Parenthood health center. And if you’ve recently had unprotected sex and you don’t want to get pregnant, you may want to consider emergency contraception (EC). 

There are a few different kinds of emergency contraception (AKA the morning-after pill). The best kind for you depends on a few factors — when you had sex, how much you weigh, whether you’re breastfeeding, and what kind is easiest for you to get. But no matter which kind, EC works better the sooner you take it. You can get emergency contraception from your local drugstore, for free or low cost from your local Planned Parenthood health center, and online. It’s totally safe to take the morning-after pill as many times as you need to — it’s just not the best way to prevent unintended pregnancies long-term. Birth control that you use before or during sex (like the IUD, implant, pill, condoms, etc.) is way more effective, affordable and convenient.

Learn more about EC and birth control options on our website, chat online, or text "PPNOW" to 774636 (PPINFO).

Tags: emergency contraception, pregnancy