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Birth control considered late, and withdrawal bleed/protection question


I've been reading many different opinions on what is considered a late pill. My NP said if it's more than a couple hours, to use back up. And plenty of other medical professionals say that you're fine if you take it within 12 hours of the normal time. I'm just confused. I have only taken it at the most within a 2-3 hour window (plus or minus) my usual time. Is this okay? I forget sometimes or just take it early if I have some conflict at my usual time.

Also, if I have sex on my last active pill and still get a withdrawal bleed am I considered not pregnant still even though I bleed so soon after sex? What about having sex on the inactive week after my period ends (day 27-28)? Does the next pack protect me during this time or does the previous pack?

Sorry for all the questions, just need some clarification.
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603463 tn?1220630455
If you were my patient, I would tell you that taking the pill within 12 hours of your usual time should be protective.  If you forget a pill, you can make it up the following day without undue alarm.  It is not a good idea to miss more than one to at most two pills per cycle. It is really important to take the pills in the first week of the pack.
You can safely have intercourse during the placebo week as long as you start your next pack on time.
USUALLY if you have a normal period at the expected time, you can be comfortable that you are not pregnant.
It NEVER hurts to use a back up method--any time you are unsure
It NEVER hurts to do a pregnancy test to be sure.
DONT forget about the option of emergency contraception--Plan B
(although it would be best to discuss this with your NP before using)
Hope this helps!
Dr B
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