Contraception and Emergency Contraception



There are 15 different types of contraception available in the UK, all of which offer protection against pregnancy, but only condoms (male and female) also provide protection against STIs (sexually transmitted infections).

Contraception is free for most people and with so many different options available, all with their own advantages, you’ll be able to find one that suits you. The important thing is to keep exploring different options until you find the one that’s best for you. You can use the My Contraception Tool to find out which methods are recommended for you or your partner.

Types of contraception

There are 2 permanent methods of contraception:

Where to get contraception

To find out where to get contraception, or find out more, in your local area see our local services information.

Emergency Contraception

If you’ve had unprotected sex (sex without using contraception, or you think your contraception might have failed) you can use emergency contraception to prevent pregnancy. This is sometimes called the ‘morning after pill’, but emergency contraception can actually be used up to 5 days after unprotected sex; the sooner emergency contraception is used, though, the more effective it is, so you should access it as soon as you can.

Emergency contraception is free from CaSH (Contraception and Sexual Health) clinics, GPs and GUM clinics, although not all clinics will provide all options. The Emergency contraceptive pill, Levonelle, is free to under 25s from some pharmacies, or you can buy it for about £25 if you are over 25 years old. See below for local details.

Types of Emergency Contraception

Where to get emergency contraception

To find out where to get emergency contraception in your local area see our local services information.