Contraceptives

Family Planning Home

Abstinence

ABSTINENCE means choosing not to have sex.

  • Many people choose not to have sex at different times in their lives.
  • If you do not have sex, pregnancy can’t happen.
  • Not having sex can PREVENT AIDS and other STD’S

Why People Choose it

People who choose not to have sex like it because:

  • It fits their needs and beliefs.
  • It causes no health problems.
  • It can be used at any time

Possible problems

Here are problems you might have:

  • The man’s penis must not be put in or near the woman’s vagina
  • You or your partner could get pregnant if you change your mind and have sex without using a birth control method

Teen Pregnancy

  • Each year, almost 1 million teenage women become pregnant.
  • 78% of teen pregnancies are unplanned.
  • Teen pregnancy rates are much higher in the United States than in many developed countries-twice as high as in England, Wales or Canada; and nine times as high as in the Netherlands or Japan.
  • 63% of teens have sex under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
  • In the County of Riverside about 10 teenagers become pregnant every day.

How does it compare

How does ABSTINENCE compare with the effectiveness of other forms of birth control?

Women out of 100 that got pregnant using the methods below:

No women

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

2 out of 100

2 out of 100

3 out of 100

12 out of 100

16-21 out of 100

18 out of 100

20 out of 100

21 out of 100

85 out of 100

 
Condom

How it works?

  • The condom is rolled onto the man's erect penis before you have sex.
  • Sperm are kept inside the condom and can't get to the women's egg.
  • The condom only works if you use a new one every time you have sex.
  • Condoms can help PREVENT AIDS and other STD's.

What you should know:

  • Condoms do not cause health problems.
  • Condoms can be bought in a drugstore.

A few of the complaints about condoms:

  • Putting on the condom can interrupt foreplay.
  • Some people say sex doesn't feel the same with a condom.
  • Condoms can be messy and less effective if not taken off carefully.

How do CONDOMS compare with the effectiveness of other forms of birth control?

Women out of 100 that got pregnant using the methods below:

No women

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

2 out of 100

2 out of 100

3 out of 100

12 out of 100

16-21 out of 100

18 out of 100

20 out of 100

21 out of 100

85 out of 100

Birth Control Shot (DMPA/Depo-Provera)

Basics about the BIRTH CONTROL SHOT

  • The BIRTH CONTROL SHOT has a hormone in it that stops the woman’s eggs from leaving her ovaries.
  • It also thickens the mucus at the opening of her uterus to prevent sperm from getting inside.
  • Every 12 weeks, the woman goes to her health care provider to get a shot, either in your hip or arm.
  • It should be given by the 5th day after your period starts.

Couples might LIKE the BIRTH CONTROL SHOT because:

  • The shot works very well to prevent pregnancy
  • It lasts for 12 weeks
  • There are no pills to take every day

Couple might DISLIKE the BIRTH CONTROL SHOT because:

  • There may be other side effects that won’t go away until the shot wears off.
  • You have to go to a health care provider every 12 weeks to get another shot.
  • It may take a longer to get pregnant after you stop using it.
  • Women’s periods may change.

Possible Side Effects:

  • Sore breasts.
  • Weight gain
  • Headaches
  • Feeling nervous or depressed.
  • Dizziness
  • Higher or lower sex drive.
  • Irregular Periods
  • Spotting between periods.
  • Longer or shorter periods.

After using the shot for 12 months, some women stop having periods.

Are there any other problems?

  • Some women may be able to get pregnant as early as 4 months after the last shot. Others can take as long as 18 months or longer.
  • You may have some bone loss. Talk to your provider if your bones break easily or if you or your family has a history of bone disease.
    • Protect your bones – each foods high in calcium, keep active, and do not smoke.

Signs there might be a problem:

  • You should go to the nearest hospital emergency room if you experience any of the following signs and symptoms:
    • Repeated, very painful headaches
    • Heavy bleeding
    • Depression
  • Severe pain in the abdomen
Contraceptive Patch

Basics about the CONTRACEPTIVE PATCH (Ortho Evra®)

  • The CONTRACEPTIVE PATCH works mainly by keeping the woman’s egg from leaving her ovaries.
  • It is a weekly hormonal birth control patch that is worn on the skin to prevent pregnancy.
  • It delivers continuous levels of norelgestromin and ethinyl estradiol through the skin and into the bloodstream.

Couples might LIKE the CONTRACEPTIVE PATCH because:

  • It does not interrupt having sex.
  • There are no pills to take every day.
  • It needs to be changed ONLY once a week for three weeks in a row, then it is removed for one week "patch-free”

Couples might DISLIKE the CONTRACEPTIVE PATCH because:

  • Offers no protection against transmission of STIs/STDs and HIV/AIDS
  • May not be the right option for women who want total privacy with their birth control decision since it must be worn

How well does the patch work?

The Ortho Evra birth control patch is 99% effective when used correctly.

How does the contraceptive patch compare with the effectiveness of other forms of birth control?

Women out of 100 that got pregnant using the methods below:

No women

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

2 out of 100

2 out of 100

3 out of 100

12 out of 100

16-21 out of 100

18 out of 100

20 out of 100

21 out of 100

85 out of 100

How does it work?

Ortho Evra prevents pregnancy the same way as birth control pills. It works primarily by preventing ovulation. It also causes changes to the cervical mucus and the endometrium.

The patch is worn for one week and replaced on the same day of the week for three consecutive weeks, with thefourth week patch-free.Your doctor will advise you which way will be best for you to start the patch. Ortho Evra uses a 28-day, or four-week cycle. You should apply a new patch on the same day of the week for three consecutive weeks, for a total of 21 days. You should not apply a patch during the fourth week. Your menstrual period should start during this “patch free” week. Every new patch should be applied on the same day of each week. This will be your “Patch Change Day.” For example, if you apply your first patch on a Monday, all your patches should be applied an a Monday. You should only wear one birth control patch at a time. The birth control patch may be worn on the buttocks, abdomen, upper torso (front and back, excluding the breasts) or upper outer arm.To apply the patch open the foil pouch by tearing it along the top edge and one side edge. Peel the foil pouch apart and open it flat. You will see that a layer of clear plastic covers the patch. It is important to remove the patch and the plastic together from the foil pouch. Using your fingernail, lift one corner of the patch and the plastic off the foil liner. Peel away half of the clear plastic and be careful not to touch the exposed sticky surface of the patch with your fingers. Apply the sticky side of the patch to the skin you have cleaned and dried, then remove the other half of the clear plastic. Press firmly on the patch with the palm of your hand for 10 seconds, making sure the edges stick well. Run your fingers around the edge of the patch to make sure it is sticking properly. Check your patch everyday to make sure all the edges are sticking. To remove your used patch, simply lift one corner and quickly peel back. Carefully fold the used patch in half so that it sticks to itself before throwing it away. You can expect your menstrual period to begin a few days after removing the third birth control patch (during the patch free week). Remember to apply your new patch to a new area of skin that is clean, dry, and free of lotions, oils, and creams.

Possible side effects:

  • Breast symptoms
  • Headache
  • Skin irritation at the application site
  • Upper respiratory illness
  • Menstrual cramps
  • Abdominal cramps

Serious risks, which can be life threatening, (these risks are increased if you smoke) include:

  • Blood clots
  • Stroke
  • Heart attacks

Signs there might be a problem:

You should go to your nearest hospital emergency room if you experience any of the following signs and symptoms:

  • Severe pain or tenderness in the stomach area
  • Sharp chest pain, coughing of blood, or sudden shortness of breath
  • Crushing chest pain or tightness in the chest
  • Sudden severe headache or vomiting, dizziness or fainting
  • Sudden partial or complete loss of vision
  • Pain in the calf
  • Breast lumps
  • Severe problems with sleeping, weakness, lack of energy, fatigue, or change in mood
  • Jaundice or yellowing of the skin or eyeballs
Diaphragm

How it works:

  • The diaphragm fits over the women's cervix to prevent sperm from reaching her egg.
  • It is used with a jelly or cream that kills the man's sperm.
  • The diaphragm works only if it is used every time you have sex.
  • The diaphragm may help PREVENT AIDS and other STD's.

What you should know:

  • It causes few health problems.
  • It can be put in up to 6 hours before having sex.

A few of the complaints about diaphragms:

  • You must go to a clinic to be fitted.
  • May cause bladder infections.
  • It may irritate the penis or vagina.


How does the DIAPHRAGM compare with the effectiveness of other forms of birth control?

Women out of 100 that got pregnant using the methods below:

No women

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

2 out of 100

2 out of 100

3 out of 100

12 out of 100

16-21 out of 100

18 out of 100

20 out of 100

21 out of 100

85 out of 100

Emergency Contraception

Worried you might be PREGNANT?

If you have had unprotected sex within the last 5 days, IT IS NOT TOO LATE.
You can do something to prevent pregnancy.

Emergency contraception (EC) is often called the “morning after pill”. It needs to be taken within 5 days (120 hours ) after unprotected sex.

Act quickly, do not wait. Call your health care provider or clinic to get Emergency Contraception.

What is EMERGENCY CONTRACEPTION?

Just like regular birth control pills, emergency contraception prevents pregnancy in one of two ways.

It stops the egg from being released, so sperm can’t fertilize the egg. Or, it changes the lining of the uterus so the egg can’t attach and grow.

In San Bernardino or Riverside Clinics, the Emergency Contraceptive method used is Emergency Contraceptive Pills (ECP), or Plan B, which are names for the same method.

  • Your health care provider will explain the correct dose and how to use emergency contraception.
  • Emergency Contraceptive Pills are now available direct from a participating pharmacy without having to go first to a clinic or a doctor.
  • You can get ECP right away, even on weekends or holidays, with this new pharmacy service.
  • Patients may be required to pay cash for Emergency Contraception pills at a pharmacy.  Whereas at health dept clinic it may be free/low cost. 

Where to find out more.

  • Call us at 1-888-728-1113
  • Call the Emergency Contraception Hotline at 1-888-NOT-2-LATE. The hotline is available in English and Spanish 24 hours a day.
  • To find a participating pharmacy near you, call their hotline at 1-800-323-1336 or visit their website at www.EC-Help.org.
  • You can also get information about emergency contraception at the following website: http://ec.princeton.edu

Statistics

Women out of 100 that got pregnant using the methods below

No women

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

2 out of 100

2 out of 100

3 out of 100

12 out of 100

16-21 out of 100

18 out of 100

20 out of 100

21 out of 100

85 out of 100

Female Condom

Basics about the FEMALE CONDOM

  • Soft and thin, and covers the inside of a women's vagina
  • It is put in the woman's vagina like a diaphragm.
  • Sperm are kept outside the female condom and can't get to the women's egg.
  • The female condom works only if you use a new one every time you have sex.
  • Female condoms can help PREVENT AIDS and other STIs/STDs.

Couples might LIKE the FEMALE CONDOM because:

  • The woman can use it to protect herself from AIDS and other STIs/STDs.
  • It can be put in before having sex.
  • It can be bought in a drugstore.

Couples might DISLIKE the FEMALE CONDOM because:

  • The female condom can be hard to handle at first
  • Some people don't like the outer ring that hangs outside the vagina

How well does the FEMALE CONDOM work?

21 out of 100 women using the FEMALE CONDOM become pregnant

How does the FEMALE CONDOM compare with the effectiveness of other forms of birth control?

Women out of 100 that got pregnant using the methods below:

No women

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

2 out of 100

2 out of 100

3 out of 100

12 out of 100

16-21 out of 100

18 out of 100

20 out of 100

21 out of 100

85 out of 100

IUD

Basics about the IUD

  • An Intrauterine Device (IUD) is a small object that is inserted by a health care professional through the cervix and placed in the uterus (womb) to prevent pregnancy.
  • An IUD affects the movements of eggs and sperm to prevent fertilization. They also change the lining of the uterus and prevent implantation.
  • A small string hangs down from the IUD into the upper part of the vagina. The IUD is not noticeable during intercourse.
  • There are three IUDs available in the United States:
    • Para-Gard has no hormones and is good for up to 10 years
    • Mirena has a hormone (levonorgestrel) and is good for up to 5 year
    • Pregestasert also has a hormone (progesterone) and is good for up to 1 year

Couples might LIKE the IUD because:

  • Immediate return of fertility after removal
  • Easily inserted and removed
  • Good for women who want long-term contraception and are not ready for tubal ligation.
  • IUDs are safe, and more effective than female sterilization.
  • Dysmenorrhea (cramps) generally improves with mirena IUD.
  • Permits spontaneous sexual activity, since it requires no action at time of intercourse.

Couples might DISLIKE the IUD because:

  • Offer no protection against STIs/STDs and HIV/AIDS.
  • May be expelled (expulsion rate 2-10%).
  • Some women are not at ease checking string.
  • Most women experience some discomfort during insertion.
  • Uterine cramps, similar to menstrual cramps, and dizziness may occur during insertion.
  • How well does the IUD work?
  •  
  • Less than 1 or 2 out of 100 women using the IUD become pregnant.

How does the IUD compare with the effectiveness of other forms of birth control?

Women out of 100 that got pregnant using the methods below. IUD is based on 5-10 years of use.

No women

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

2 out of 100

2 out of 100

3 out of 100

12 out of 100

16-21 out of 100

18 out of 100

20 out of 100

21 out of 100

85 out of 100

How do you use an IUD?

Getting an IUD involves a clinic visit. It must be inserted by a medical care professional. After insertion the IUD is effective immediately. You have to check strings after each menses. If not found, check in different position. The IUD may have been expelled or moved up in the uterus. You must call for an appointment and use another form of birth control until you can see your doctor.

Possible side effects:

  • Heavier menses for the first few months; lighter menses after 3-6 months of using IUD.
  • Amenorrhea (lack of menstruation) occurs in about 20% of women at one year of use.
  • Pain for a day or so after insertion or removal.
  • Headaches, acne, breast pain during first few months.
  • Ovarian cysts (enlarged ovarian follicles) have been diagnosed in about 12% of Mirena users.
  • Higher chance of pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) if you or your partner has sex with other partners.


Signs there might be a problem:

You should go to your nearest hospital emergency room if you experience any of the following signs and symptoms:

Acronym “PAINS”

  • Period late (pregnancy), abnormal spotting or bleeding.
  • Abdominal pain, pain with intercourse.
  • Infection exposure (any STI), abnormal discharge.
  • Not feeling well, fever, chills.
  • String missing, shorter or longer.
Natural family planning

With NATURAL FAMILY PLANNING and the FERTILITY AWARENESS METHOD, you will learn about signs in a woman's body that show when she can and cannot get pregnant.

You take a class to learn these signs.

  • If you choose NFP, you do not have sex during the time the woman can get pregnant.
  • With FAM, you use a method such as the condom during that time.
  • NFP and FAM work best if you follow all the rules taught in your class.
  • NFP and FAM do not protect you from AIDS and other STIs/STDs and HIV/AIDS.

People who use NFP or FAM like them because:

  • They do not cause health problems.
  • Learning about NFP or FAM with your partner can make it easier to talk about family planning.

Here are some problems you might have.

  • It takes time to learn about NFP and FAM.
  • You must chart your signs every day.


How does NATURAL FAMILY PLANNING and the FERTILITY AWARENESS METHOD compare with the effectiveness of other forms of birth control?

Women out of 100 that got pregnant using the methods below:

No women

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

2 out of 100

2 out of 100

3 out of 100

12 out of 100

16-21 out of 100

18 out of 100

20 out of 100

21 out of 100

85 out of 100

The Pill

Basics about the PILL and the MINIPILL

  • The Pill keeps the woman's egg from leaving her ovaries (ovulation), makes the cervical mucus thicker, and changes the lining of the uterus (endometrium) so that the fertilized egg will not attach to the uterus
  • The woman takes one pill every day at the same time of the day
  • Since there is no egg to meet with the man's sperm, the woman does not get pregnant.
  • The Pill is a hormonal method to prevent pregnancy. The Pill is also called a "combined" oral contraceptive because it has two hormones, estrogen and progesterone. The Minipill contains only one hormone (progesterone).

Couples might LIKE the PILL because:

  • Convenient, does not interfere with sex
  • May diminish menstrual cramps and pain
  • May regulate menstrual periods
  • May protect against ovarian and endometrial cancer
  • May prevent ectopic pregnancies
  • May protect against osteoporosis
  • In the U.S., it is safety to use birth control pills than to deliver a baby
  • The pill has protective effects against PID (pelvic inflammatory disease)

Couples might DISLIKE the PILL because:

  • Must take daily at the same time
  • Many side effects
  • Offers no protection against transmission of STIs/STDs, and/or HIV/AIDS

How well does the PILL work?

Less than 3 out of a 100 women using the pill become pregnant (97% theoretical use, 95% actual use)


How does the PILL compare with the effectiveness of other forms of birth control?

Women out of 100 that got pregnant using the methods below:

No women

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

2 out of 100

2 out of 100

3 out of 100

12 out of 100

16-21 out of 100

18 out of 100

20 out of 100

21 out of 100

85 out of 100

How do you use the PILL?

Take one pill at the same time every day. The nurse in the clinic will tell you when to start taking the pill.

Possible side effects:

  • Nausea
  • Weight gain/weight loss
  • Headaches
  • Breast enlargement
  • Mood changes
  • Depression
  • Skin darkness on face
  • Higher risk of deficiencies of various B vitamins (B2,B6, B 12), folic acid and vitamin C

Dispelling myths:

The Birth Control PILL

  • DOES NOT cause infertility
  • DOES NOT cause birth defects
  • DOES NOT require a “rest” period
  • DOES NOT decrease sex drive
  • DOES NOT build up in a woman’s body

You should NOT use the PILL if you have:

  • Unexplained vaginal bleeding
  • Liver tumors, active hepatitis or severe cirrhosis
  • Current breast cancer

Your medical care provider will help you determine if there are any contraindications to the use of the pill.

If you smoke, be sure to tell your medical care provider.


Signs there might be a problem:

You should go to your nearest hospital emergency room if you experience any of the following signs and symptoms:

Acronym “ACHES”

  • Abdominal pain(severe)
  • Chest pain (severe or shortness of breath)
  • Headaches(severe)
  • Eye problems such as blurred vision or loss of vision
  • Severe leg pain (calf or thigh)

How is the MINIPILL different from the PILL?

  • The Minipill is a birth control pill that contains only one hormone (progesterone) instead of the two hormones (estrogen and progesterone) in the “regular” Birth Control Pill.
  • Although you take one pill at the same time every day just like the "regular" Pill, if you are 3 hours late taking your Minipill you MAY become pregnant and MUST use a back-up method such as condoms for the next 48 hours
  • The Minipill is slightly less effective against pregnancy than the "regular" Pill (96% if used correctly all the time)
  • The Minipill is most often provided for women who have had problems with the “regular” birth control pill or who are breastfeeding
Spermicides

Basics about SPERMICIDES -

  • A SPERMICIDE is a substance inserted in the vagina that kills or disables sperm on contact so that it cannot cause pregnancy.
  • Spermicides come in many different forms: foam, jelly, cream, film, and suppositories
  • Most use the chemical nonoxynol-9
  • Even more effective when used with a barrier method of birth control, such as latex condoms
  • Spermicides work only if you use them every time you have sex

Couples might LIKE Spermicides because:

  • Available without a prescription, you can buy them in a drugstore and they do not require an office visit
  • Lubrication may increase pleasure
  • Use can be part of sex play
  • Safe/no major side effects
  • Immediate return to fertility
  • Do not require partner cooperation
  • They cause few health problems

Couples might DISLIKE Spermicides because:

  • Do not protect against STIs/STDs and HIV/AIDS
  • Can be messy
  • Can have a bad taste during oral sex
  • Not as effective as other birth control methods
  • You must put them in within about 15-20 minutes of having sex

How well do they work?

Spermicides used alone are 79-84 %. This means that about 16 to 21 women out of a 100
using spermicides become pregnant. If used in conjunction with a latex condom, they become 97% effective, so only 3 women out of 100 become pregnant.

How does Spermicide compare with the effectiveness of other forms of birth control?

Women out of 100 that got pregnant using the methods below:

No women

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

2 out of 100

2 out of 100

3 out of 100

12 out of 100

16-21 out of 100

18 out of 100

20 out of 100

21 out of 100

85 out of 100

How do you use spermicides?

The lubrication they provide can increase pleasure. Insert your spermicide 10-15 minutes before intercourse. Add more spermicide for repeated intercourse. Leave your spermicide in your vagina for 6-8 hours after the last act of intercourse and do not douche for 8 hours. Douching weakens spermicide. Spermicides are available in most drug stores and do not require a prescription.

  • Foam: Foam comes in a can and has the consistency of shaving cream. To use it, shake the can well. Place the applicator on the top of the can and press down. The plunger will rise as the applicator fills. Insert the applicator about two to three inches into your vagina and press the plunger to deposit the foam over your cervix. As you withdraw the applicator, be sure not to pull back on the plunger. This will suck some foam back into the applicator. It is effective immediately.
  • Creams and Jellies: Creams are opaque and jellies are clear. They can be inserted into the vagina with an applicator. Cream or jelly is typically used with a diaphragm or cervical cap. They can also be used with condoms and are effective immediately.
  • Vaginal Contraceptive Film (VCF): VCF comes in thin squares that dissolve over the cervix. To use it, fold the film in half and then place it on the tip of a finger. Insert your finger into your vagina and put the VCF over your cervix. A dry finger and quick insertion will help the VCF stay in place and not to stick to your finger. It may take 10-15 minutes for the VCF to melt and become effective.
  • Suppositories: Suppositories are capsules that dissolve in the vagina. They are inserted into the Vagina like a tampon and pushed up to the cervix. It takes about 10-20 minutes for a suppository to become effective.

What about the side effects?

  • Frequent use can make you more susceptible to STIs/STDs and HIV/AIDS
  • If irritation of the vagina or penis develops, discontinue use and consult physician
Sterilization

STERILIZATION is a surgery done when people no longer want to have children. A man or woman can have it done.

  • In men, the tubes that carry the man's sperm are cut or blocked. This is called a VASECTOMY.
  • In women, the tubes that carry the woman's eggs are cut or blocked. This is called a TUBAL LIGATION.
  • Sterilization is considered to be a permanent birth control method.
  • There is almost no chance of pregnancy after sterilization, if the doctor's advice is followed.
  • Sterilization DOES NOT prevent STIs/STDs and HIV/AIDS.

People who use sterilization like it because:

  • No other method of birth control is ever needed.
  • The surgery is safe. It does not take long to recover.
  • It does not change your feelings or your ability to have sex.

Here are problems you might have:

  • There may be a small chance of infection or bleeding after surgery.
  • If you change your mind after the procedure is done, it is a very complicated and expensive surgery to reverse. There is no guarantee the reversal will be successful.


How does STERILIZATION compare with the effectiveness of other forms of birth control?

The table below shows how many women out of 100 get pregnant using each method.

No women

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

2 out of 100

2 out of 100

3 out of 100

12 out of 100

16-21 out of 100

18 out of 100

20 out of 100

21 out of 100

85 out of 100

Where is STERILIZATION performed?

In Riverside County, any of our clinic locations can give you information and a referral for sterilization to Riverside County Regional Medical Center to have the procedure.

Vaginal Ring

Basics about the VAGINAL RING (NuvaRing®)

  • It is a flexible, transparent vaginal ring, about as big as a silver dollar
  • It contains a combination of the progestin etonogestrel and the estrogen ethinyl estradiol
  • The woman inserts it into her vagina and leaves it for three weeks
  • It keeps the woman's egg from leaving her ovaries (ovulation), makes the cervical mucus thicker, and changes the lining of the uterus (endometrium) so that the fertilized egg will not attach to the uterus (works similar to the Birth Control Pill)

Couples might LIKE the VAGINAL RING because:

  • Convenient, does not interfere with sex
  • There are no pills to take every day
  • It needs to be changed ONLY once a month because, once inserted in the vagina, it works for three weeks in a row

Couples might DISLIKE the VAGINAL RING because:

  • The vaginal ring needs to be removed three weeks after insertion on the same day of the week it was inserted, at about the same time.
  • Offers no protection against transmission of STIs/STDs and HIV/AIDS.

How well does the VAGINAL RING work?

Vaginal Ring is 98-99% effective when used correctly


How does the VAGINAL RING compare with the effectiveness of other forms of birth control?

Women out of 100 that got pregnant using the methods below:

No women

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

1 out of 100

2 out of 100

2 out of 100

3 out of 100

12 out of 100

16-21 out of 100

18 out of 100

20 out of 100

21 out of 100

85 out of 100

How do you use the VAGINAL RING?

You insert the ring in your vagina and leave it there for three weeks. You then remove it for a "one-week ring-free" period.

To insert NuvaRing, after washing and drying your hands, remove NuvaRing from its foil pouch. Keep the foil pouch for proper disposal of the ring after use. Choose the position that is most comfortable to use. For example, lying down, squatting, or standing with one leg up.

Hold NuvaRing between your thumb and index finger and press the opposite sides of the ring together. Gently push the folded ring into your vagina. The exact position of NuvaRing in the vagina is not important for it to work. Although some women may be aware of NuvaRing in the vagina, most women do not feel it once it is in place. If you feel discomfort, NuvaRing is probably not inserted back far enough in the vagina. Use your finger to gently push NuvaRing further into your vagina. Once inserted, keep NuvaRing in place for three weeks in a row.

Remove the ring three weeks after insertion on the same day of the week it was inserted, at about the same time. For example, when NuvaRing is inserted on a Sunday at about 10:00 PM, the ring should be removed on a Sunday three weeks later at about 10:00 PM. You can remove NuvaRing by hooking the index finger under the forward rim or by holding the rim between the index and middle finger and pulling it out. Place the used ring in the foil pouch and properly dispose of it in a waste receptacle out of the reach of children and pets. Do not throw it in the toilet.

Your menstrual period will usually start two to three days after the ring is removed and may not have finished before the next ring is inserted. Insert a new ring one week after the last one was removed, even if your menstrual period has not stopped.

Possible side effects:

  • Vaginal infections and irritations
  • Vaginal discharge (leukorrhea)
  • Headache
  • Weight gain
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Change in appetite
  • Abdominal cramps and bloating
  • Breast tenderness
  • Irregular vaginal bleeding

Signs there might be a problem:

  • You should go to your nearest hospital emergency room if you experience any of the following signs and symptoms:
  • Severe pain or tenderness in the stomach area
  • Sharp chest pain, coughing of blood, or sudden shortness of breath
  • Sudden severe headache or vomiting, dizziness or fainting
  • Sudden partial or complete loss of vision
  • Pain in the calf
  • Crushing chest pain or heaviness in the chest