Birth Control Implant- Nexplanon
Birth Control Implant (Nexplanon) is a matchstick-sized rod that is inserted in the arm to prevent pregnancy. Nexplanon (the birth control implant) is safe, effective, and convenient. The Birth Control Implant must be inserted by a health care provider.
Is the Birth Control Implant (Nexplanon) Right for Me?
The progestin in the birth control implant works by
keeping eggs from leaving the ovaries. Pregnancy cannot happen if there is no egg to join with the sperm.
making a woman’s cervical mucus thicker. This keeps sperm from getting to the eggs.
Certain medicines and supplements may make the birth control implant less effective. These include
certain TB medicines
certain medicines that are taken by mouth for yeast infections
certain HIV medicines
certain anti-seizure medicines
certain mental disorder medicines
herbals like St. John’s wort
Keep in mind Implanon doesn’t protect against sexually transmitted diseases. Use a latex or female condom to reduce the risk of infection.
The implant cannot be used by women who have breast cancer.
Irregular bleeding is the most common side effect, especially in the first 6–12 months of use.
For most women, periods become fewer and lighter. After one year, 1 out of 3 women who use the birth control implant will stop having periods completely.
Some women have longer, heavier periods.
Some women have increased spotting and light bleeding between periods.
These side effects are completely normal. Some woman may worry that they are pregnant if they do not have a regular period. But when the implant is used correctly, it is very effective. If you are concerned about a possible pregnancy, you can always take a pregnancy test.
Less common side effects of Implanon include
change in sex drive
discoloring or scarring of the skin over the implant
rarely, an infection or pain in the arm
pain at the insertion site
After insertion, be sure to tell any health care provider you may see that you are using the birth control implant.
The implant is effective for three years after it is inserted. After that, it should be removed. Even though it stops working, it may interfere with your period.
The implant can be removed at any time. Your health care provider will numb the area with a painkiller and will usually make one small cut to remove the implant. Removal usually takes just a few minutes, but it generally takes longer than insertion. A new implant may be inserted at this time. Pregnancy can happen anytime after the implant is removed.
If you get the implant during the first five days of your period, you are protected against pregnancy immediately. Otherwise, you need to use some form of backup birth control — like a condom, female condom, diaphragm, sponge, or emergency contraception (morning after pill) — for the first week after getting the implant.