What should I do if I miss a Hana Pill?

by Dr Fran Yarlett · Jan 26 2023

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Reviewed by Dr Melanie Davis-Hall on Jan 26 2023

Slynd Everything you need to know

The Hana pill is a type of progestogen only pill. There are multiple different brands of progestogen only pill, and Hana is a brand that contains a progestogen called desogestrel. Hana works by stopping your body from releasing an egg from the ovary (ovulating) each month, thinning out the womb lining to prevent a fertilised egg from implanting and growing and also by thickening the cervical mucus which makes it harder for sperm to enter the womb and reach an egg.

If you take your Hana pill every day without fail at the same time, it is 99% effective at preventing pregnancy. However, typical use (which takes into account delayed or missed pills) means effectiveness drops to around 91%.

If you miss a Hana pill, the first thing to do is stay calm! To find out what to do next, you can either use our easy to follow missed pill calculator or read on to our guide below.

Missed pill calculator | The Lowdown

How late is considered a missed pill?

The window in which you need to take your Hana pill is 12 hours. This means that if you usually take your pill at 8am in the morning, and one day you forget it, you have until 8pm in the evening to take your pill. If you have not taken the pill within these 12 hours, it is classed as a missed pill.

Hana Pill Missed Pill Diagram

What happens if you miss one Hana pill?

If you forget to take your Hana pill at the correct time but remember to take it before the 12 hours have passed, you do not need to do anything.

However, if you miss one Hana pill (either by forgetting to take the pill within 12 hours of your usual dose, or by forgetting to take it that day completely), you can follow our missed pill calculator for advice.

You should take the missed pill as soon as you remember and then take your next pill at the same time as usual. This might mean taking two Hana pills in the same day, but this is completely safe.

If you have missed a pill, you are not protected from pregnancy. You should avoid sex or use barrier methods (like condoms) for 48 hours after you start taking the pill correctly again. This is because it takes two days of taking the Hana pill for the cervical mucus to thicken up again and prevent sperm from entering your womb.

What happens if you miss two Hana pills?

If you miss two Hana pills, you should take a pill as soon as you remember to and then start taking your next pill at the same time. Again, this might mean taking two Hana pills in the same day, but this is completely safe.

If you have had sex without a condomsince you first missed a pill, it’s very important to consider using emergency contraception such as the morning after pill.

Remember you are not protected against pregnancy until you have used the pill correctly for a full 48 hours, and in this time you should use barrier contraception like condoms or avoid sex.

Can you get pregnant if you miss a Hana pill?

If you miss a Hana pill, your body could release an egg from your ovary. As sperm can actually stay alive inside you for up to between 5 to 7 days after sex, a missed pill can lead to an unintended pregnancy.

If you have had unprotected sex (without a condom) after missing a pill (so more than 12 hours after your last Hana pill) then you may need emergency contraception to prevent pregnancy. Emergency contraception is either the copper coil or the morning after pill. 

The copper coil is the most effective form of emergency contraception and can be fitted by your local sexual health clinic. You can order the morning after pill from The Lowdown to be delivered straight to your door or get this from a pharmacy or your local sexual health clinic.

Remembering to take your pill

There are different ways to get into the habit of taking your Hana pill on time each day. For example, put the pill next to your toothbrush, phone charger or on your bedside table so you see the packet at the same time each day. Or, set an alarm on your phone with an annoying tune that you don’t turn off until the pill is in your mouth. Forming a regular habit to take your pill at the same time each day will make you consistent and less likely to miss pills.

However, if you are missing pills frequently, it might be time to consider a change in contraception. Start by using our recommender tool to find the best contraception choice for you.

Finally, a common reason for missing Hana pills is simply running out of your supply! With The Lowdown, you can prevent this from happening through our subscription delivery service to make sure you’re never left in that “oh shit” moment. You can order the pill online from us for next day delivery straight to your door.

Contraception recommender | The Lowdown

One of The Lowdown’s fab Clinical Directors, Dr Frances Yarlett MBBCh (Hons) BSc (Hons) MRCP (2016) MRCGP DFSRH completed her medical training from Cardiff University in 2013. She is currently working as a salaried GP partner in Sheffield with an interest in complex medical patients and women’s health. Fran is really passionate about patient choice and wants to empower women to take control of their bodies and contraception needs.