Not using protection if you don’t want a baby is very risky. “Sperm can live inside the vagina for up to five days,” says Emma, “so penis-in-vagina sex that happens up to five days before ovulation can still result in pregnancy.”
It is also very tricky to pinpoint exactly when you are going to ovulate, so it is very easy to misjudge when you are at a higher risk of pregnancy.
The NHS website states that although the average length of the menstrual cycle is 28 days, they can vary from 21 up to 40 days.
If you have a short cycle, you could ovulate shortly after your period, which means you could get pregnant if you have unprotected sex right after or even during your period.
If you want to avoid pregnancy, use a contraceptive method such as condoms or the birth control pill. Remember that condoms are the only contraceptive method that also protect you from sexually transmitted infections, so we recommend you use them with new partners.
If your regular contraceptive method lets you down, ellaOne is the most effective morning after pill* which can help protect you from unplanned pregnancy.