August 07, 2019
Superdrug is said to be the first high street retailer to sell a period-delaying pill called norethisterone, which temporarily stops women’s periods. 
Superdrug Is Now Selling Period-Delaying Pill Norethisterone In Its Pharmacy Stores
The store said the move to offer this drug is in response to a “demand from Women who want more choice when it comes to their bodies”. 
From today [7 August], women over the age of 18 have the opportunity to walk into any of its pharmacy stores to pick up the pill, subject to a consultation and questionnaire.[Read More: Perimenopause: What To Expect During The Final Years Of Your Periods]How Does The Period-Delay Pill Work?Norethisterone is the synthetic version of a sex hormone, which naturally occurs in the human body. It belongs to a group of hormones called progestogens, which are also found in mini pills and combined contraceptive pills.
Taking norethisterone tablets will not protect you against pregnancy, so you still need to use a method of contraception when taking them.How Can You Get It?Norethisterone is usually prescribed by GPs, which is why you might not have heard of it before. The drug has been available on Superdrug’s Online Doctor service – like an online GP – for a while, however women can now walk into one of its pharmacy stores and ask for it.
You’ll be prescribed three norethisterone tablets a day. You can choose a pack of 30, 60 or 90 pills, which last for 10, 20 and 30 days respectively. The pill needs to be taken three days before the expected period begins, and it delays a period until three days after the last tablet.
But they don’t come cheap. For 30 tablets, it costs £29. For the 60 tablet pack, it’s £45. And for the 90 tablet pack, it costs £59.[Read More: Let’s Talk About Having Sex On Your Period]Are There Any Side Effects?Dr Pixie McKenna, Superdrug’s health ambassador, advises people to read the patient information leaflet before taking medication. One of the most common side effects is that it can cause irregularities in your menstrual cycle, so it might take a while for your periods to return to a regular pattern.
“I’d always recommend talking any concerns or questions through with a healthcare professional,” said Dr McKenna.
The NHS states norethisterone may not be suitable if you have a history of blood clots, and how well it works in delaying periods varies between women. Some women taking norethisterone may experience breast tenderness, nausea, headaches, or disturbances in mood and sex drive, states the NHS. What About Women On The Pill?Women who are taking a combined contraceptive pill can delay their period by skipping the one-week pill break at the end of the three-week course. Instead of taking the break, start a new blister pack straight away. The NHS advises to avoid taking more than two packs without a break, unless your GP says you can.There’s a risk you could experience side effects, such as feeling sick, being sick, diarrhoea, or unexpected vaginal bleeding. Speak to your pharmacist, community contraception clinic or GP if you have any concerns. Related... Should You Be Taking Codeine For Your Period Pain? 7 Things People With Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD) Want You To Know How Do Men Really Feel About Taking The Male Contraceptive Pill?
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