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A Reminder App
You may already have an alarm set on your phone, but Dr. Krajewski recommends taking it one step further by getting a reminder app that keeps you on top of your birth control pills.
For some of us, she says, "you can set an alarm on your phone and it’s going to go off every day at 10:30, and that’s going to work for, like, a week." If you're starting to get reminder fatigue, switch it up with Bedsider's Reminders app, which you can set up to send you texts through the day. You can also use myPill, or Spot On, which also tracks your menstrual cycle.
Chewable Birth Control
This one actually came to us by way of one of Refinery29's own editors. If you've ever found yourself with your birth control pill but without anything to down it with, you know that the struggle is real.
Chewable birth control makes things a little easier by eliminating the middleman: a glass of water. How many times have you put off taking a pill for when you've found some water, only to end up forgetting? Chewable pills like the Minastrin 24 Fe might just be your fix. (But again, talk to your doctor and find out if it's a good fit for you.)
Use Birth Control To Skip Periods
Dr. Krajewski says that a pretty common method among her patients is using hormonal birth control to skip periods. It sounds dodgy, but it's actually safe to do (though it might not be your thing). And, again, check with your doctor — sensing a theme here?
The way it works: Take your birth control pills as per usual, but skip the placebo pills and start right away on a new pack.
You'll be able to skip your periods, or at least have a little more control over them, which makes it easier to plan for, say, vacation sex.
Have Plan B On Hand
Plan B doesn't exactly come cheap, but if you're regularly sexually active, you may want to consider having a morning-after pill on hand.
You might not think you need it, but Dr. Krajewski says it'll save you from a panicked trip to the drugstore if the situation does arise — especially since you only have 72 hours to take Plan B, and you never know if you'll run into issues trying to get it from the pharmacy.
"Of course, you don’t think you’re going to need it — it’s like a fire extinguisher," she tells us. "There’s no reason to not have it in the cabinet."
Be Careful With Fertility Apps
While fertility apps can be great, Dr. Krajewski says that they can also underestimate your fertile days.
That's because, while many of them only tell you your three or four most fertile days, most of us have a lot more than that. She recommends the CycleBeads app for maximum accuracy.