With 99-percent efficacy when administered perfectly, it’s easy to understand how the pill ranks as one of the most popular methods of contraception in Australia. However, if appropriate care isn’t taken to use the pill perfectly, that 99-percent efficacy plummets, taking the safety net for pregnancy prevention along for the ride. We’re talking about messing up your daily pill-popping schedule by taking a pill late, taking a pill early, skipping a pill altogether, engaging in alcohol associated behaviours, and incorrectly storing birth control. That’s right, the conditions in which you store the birth control pill can drop its rate of effectiveness down to 91% – yikes!

Learning how to store birth control pills correctly is a step in the right direction of maintaining their effectiveness, preventing packet damage, and keeping the medication out of the wrong hands. So, if it’s not in your plans to have kids any time soon, we encourage you to continue reading.

How to store the pill correctly?

Always read the pamphlet included in the box for brand-specific instructions regarding storage temperature or humidity levels. Generally speaking, oral contraceptives should be stored in a dry, temperature-controlled location, out of reach of direct light, moisture, pets, and children.

What temperature is safe for birth control storage?

The ideal temperature range for oral contraceptives is between 15 C – 30 C for an extended timeframe. The pill can be exposed to higher and lower temperatures, however only for short bursts of time. That’s because the pill is a hormone-based medication; temperature fluctuations can affect the pill’s potency and push you into a high-risk category for unwanted pregnancy.

Where is the best place to store birth control pills?

When it comes to identifying the best place to store your birth control pills, let’s break it down into lifestyles.

  • Complete homebody, you’re likely to be home most nights of the week

While your bathroom may seem like the obvious, media-influenced choice, the humidity fluctuations that occur when you’re having a shower are a huge red flag for safe pill storage. Try storing your pills in a place that’s easily entwined in your daily routine, like a bedside table or bedroom dresser out of direct sunlight.

  • The 50-50, you spend some nights at home and other nights at the home of a partner or casual fling

For this situation, common sense says it’s wise to keep your birth control pills on you at all times. Try storing in a purse or overnighter, ensuring the pills are kept in a protective case to prevent damage. If you choose to store your pills in an overnight bag, avoid leaving the bag in your car for an extended time as the heat can affect potency.

  • The beyond nine-to-fiver, your work is basically your home

If you’re a committed employee who is likely to work late into the evening, we suggest storing a spare sleeve of birth control pills in your work bag, desk or locker.

  • Seasoned traveller, you never know where you’re going to be

When you spend a decent chunk of your life in the sky, always pack your birth control pills in your carry-on luggage. This is a total life-saver move should your luggage ever get lost, delayed or damaged during transit. Trust us, the last thing you want is to be searching for a new birth control prescription in a foreign country.

At the end of the day, if you’re worried your pills have been affected by humidity or temperature the Youly team is always available on standby to provide pill repeats when required.

This blog is designed to be informative and educational. It is not intended to provide specific medical advice or replace advice from your medical practitioner.