Question for Betty.

Dear Betty,

I haven't taken birth control pills in 3 months.  I left them and I didn't want to take them after because I thought I needed to get a new packet.  What do I do?  Make an appointment for a new packet?
Betty's Answer.

I'm guessing that you left on vacation and forgot your pills.  You then waited 3 months, and have decided to restart your OCPs (oral contraceptive pills).  When you restart your OCPs you need to start with a new pack on either the first day of your next period, or the Sunday following your next menses. If your period starts on a Sunday, start the new pack on that day. It is important to take your pill at the same time every day.  If you miss your pill you can take it as soon as you remember that day, and also take the next dose at your regular time that day.  When you restart your OCPs, you need to use condoms for at least 2 to 3 weeks, until the pills are effective.  If while you were not taking your pills for 3 months, you had unprotected intercourse, you should schedule an appointment with your health care provider or with the SHCC for a pregnancy test and STI testing.  If you are due for an annual exam and pap, now would be a great time to schedule that appointment. It is always a good idea to bring in your current, or in your case, past pill pack for your provider to see what you have been taking. If you do not have a new pack it is important to see your provider for a new pack, and for contraceptive counseling.