If you are fasting because of a health or medical issue (such as surgery) you should consult your practice nurse or doctor.
If you are fasting for religious or cultural reasons follow the advice below.
Fasting during certain times of day
Take your pill at a time of day when you can eat. You might need to change your usual time.
If you use a desogestrel POP:
start taking your pill at a time when you can eat, as long as you do not have to take a pill more than 12 hours late
if this isn’t possible, follow the advice for the other types of POP.
Other types of POP (without the hormone desogestrel):
Before the fasting period begins, take your pill earlier than usual at a time when you know you will be able to eat. For example, if you normally take it at 7am, and this is now a fasting time, take it before you go to bed the night before or earlier.
Taking two pills in 24 hours is safe and won’t affect your contraceptive cover.
If you want to change your time to an earlier one go backwards. For example, take your pill at 11pm the first night, 10pm the next night, 9pm the next and so on until you reach a time that suits you.
Take the rest of your pack at your new time.
You might get some irregular bleeding but this isn’t harmful.
If taking your pill earlier isn’t possible then start taking it at your new time straight away, even if this is more than three hours late. You will need to use additional contraception such condoms if you have sex during the next two days.
Fasting for 24 hours, NOT MORE than once a month
If you miss one pill (for all types of POP) you will not be protected against pregnancy.
Take your next pill as normal the next day.
Use an additional method of contraception (such as a condom) if you have sex during the next two days.
Fasting for 24 hours, MORE than once a month
If you fast for 24 hours more than once in any month there is a risk that you will lose your protection from pregnancy. You will need to use an additional form of contraception.
If you regularly fast more than once a month a different method of contraception might be more suitable for you.