There are two types of contraceptive pill:

  1. The combined Pill

The combined pill is usually just called the pill. It contains two hormones – oestrogen and progestogen. These are similar to the natural hormones women produce in their ovaries. The hormones in the pill prevent your ovaries from releasing an egg (ovulating) thus preventing pregnancy.

If you want to learn more about the Pill, please download this leaflet.

  1. The progesterone only pill (POP)

The POP doesn’t contain any oestrogen and only releases progesterone similar to the natural progesterone produced by the ovaries. All POPs work to prevent pregnancy by thickening the mucus in the cervix to stop sperm reaching an egg. However the main action of desogestrel POPs is to stop your ovaries releasing an egg (ovulation). Both kinds of POP are effective for preventing pregnancy when taken effectively.

When taking the POP there’s no break between packs of pills – when you finish a pack, you start the next one the next day.

Some women choose the POP when other health conditions prevent them from taking the combined pill. If you want to learn more about the POP, please download this leaflet

Important information

Make an appointment to discuss the right contraceptive pill for you by visiting our find a clinic page.

Even if you choose the contraceptive pill method to prevent pregnancy, you will still need to use a condom to help prevent the transfer of sexually transmitted infections.Condoms can protect you from STI’s such as syphilis and gonorrhoea, both of which have increased in the last couple of years.