Contraception after birth
Did you know you can become pregnant again very soon after giving birth to your baby? Before you leave hospital, we’ll talk to you about your options.
You can get pregnant very soon after giving birth
You can produce eggs (ovulate) as soon as three weeks after you’ve given birth, so you can become pregnant again very soon.
It’s even possible to get pregnant after giving birth but before you have a period.
Leaving at least twelve months between your pregnancies can reduce the chance of you, or your next baby, having complications.
We can give you contraception before you leave so you won’t have to visit another healthcare clinic or GP practice.
All the contraceptive options we offer you are safe to take if you are breastfeeding.
The coil is a small device which we place into your womb after your baby has been born.
There are two types of coil:
- the copper coil (or intrauterine device, IUD) does not release hormones, and lasts for ten years
- the Mirena coil (or intrauterine system, IUS) releases hormones and lasts for six years.
About one woman in every thousand will become pregnant while using the coil.
The hormonal implant is a device about the size of a matchstick which is placed under the skin of your upper arm. It lasts for three years.
Less than one woman in every thousand will become pregnant while using the implant.
Progesterone only pill
The progesterone only pill is taken at the same time every day.
About nine in every hundred women become pregnant while taking the pill because you have to take it daily, and some people forget.
The depo-progesterone injection is an injection that goes into your bum. It lasts for three months, so you will need to go back to your GP or clinic for another injection every three months.
Some people have side effects, which can include gaining weight and a delay in having periods.
About three women in every hundred become pregnant while using the injection.
Start thinking about your choices early
At the start of your pregnancy, we’ll give you a leaflet that explains more about contraception after birth.
Please do speak to your midwife or doctor about your options before you give birth.
This will give you plenty of time to plan and decide on the choice that is right for you.
We also have more detailed leaflets for each type of contraception. Just ask your doctor or midwife if you want to know more.