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1
Sep 2015
Contraception awareness by Asifah Arif

Contraception is widely available in the UK from various sources such as GPs, pharmacies, health clinics, supermarkets and other retailers. Contraception is free of charge for women on the NHS and some local schemes linked to GP practices provide free condoms for men and women aged between 13 to 35 years old.

For men the most common method is the male condom which not only is an effective method of contraception but also protects against sexually transmitted infections (STI’s). A more permanent and effective method for birth control is a Vasectomy.

For female contraception, there are a number of factors to think about such as age; social issues, finances and current health.

With regards to health issues the main factors to consider when choosing the right contraception method are the following:

  • Age e.g. 35 years old and over
  • Overall health e.g. smoking, physical exercise, alcohol intake and body mass index
  • Health problems and any medications you are taking, i.e. if you are diabetic or epileptic.
  • If you are breastfeeding.
  • Whether you wish to be pregnant in the future.

There are lots of different options for female contraception available on the NHS, such as:

The contraceptive cap; combined pill; female condoms; contraceptive implant; contraceptive injection; contraceptive patch; diaphragms; intrauterine device (IUD); intrauterine system (IUS); natural family planning; progestogen-only pill; vaginal ring and female sterilization which is a permanent method.

When choosing what the right method is for you, there are number of things you should be aware of:

  • Whether you want a contraceptive that may help with heavy or painful periods or alter you cycle.
  • Contraceptives that you need to think about every day e.g. taking an oral tablet daily
  • How effective is the method in pregnancy prevention.
  • Contraceptives that also protect against STIs e.g. condoms
  • Methods that last months or years e.g. injections and implants
  • Side effects

If unprotected sex has occurred or a contraceptive method has failed e.g. failed barrier method such as condom splitting, then emergency contraception is an option too. There are two kinds of emergency contraceptive pill. Levonelle® which has to be taken within 72 hours (three days) of sex which is widely available from your local pharmacy. And EllaOne®, which has to be taken within 120 hours (five days) of sex and is usually prescribed by a GP or prescribing nurse. Both pills work by preventing or delaying ovulation. There is also another option the IUD also known as “the coil” that can be inserted into your uterus up to five days after unprotected sex. It may stop an egg from being fertilized or implanting in your womb. The important thing to remember is that emergency contraception does not protect against sexually transmitted infections.

Please follow safe sex tips if you are having sex with ‘anonymous’, multiple sex partners or people who are risk of getting STIs. If you have any concerns or questions regarding contraception, please speak to you GP, local sexual health clinic or family planning clinic.

References

http://pathways.nice.org.uk

http://www.nice.org.uk/guidance

http://www.nice.org.uk/standards-and-indicators

http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/contraception-guide/pages/emergency-contraception

http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/contraception-guide/pages/what-is-contraception

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COVID-19 Vaccinations

We are pleased to announce that NHS Covid-19 Vaccinations will be carried out at Bolton Wanderers Football Club by Hootons Pharmacy from 28/01/2021. Please find the location here.

If you are in receipt of an NHS letter that explains you are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccination then please click this link: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/book-coronavirus-vaccination/

Alternatively, you can call 119 and they will assist you with your booking.

You will be able to choose the option to book Hootons, Bolton Wanderers Football Club, Unit 1B,Burnden Way,Horwich, Greater Manchester,BL66JW

If you are a health and social care worker requiring vaccination , please click on this link to book an appointment: https://lvs7.nhsbookings.com/v2/

The NHS is prioritising those at risk. We anticipate moving down the cohort list set by JCVI, as the weeks roll by. You will be notified as soon as that information has been released.

Stay Safe, maintain social distancing and keep washing your hands.

Whittles Pharmacies

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