The contraceptive implant is a popular, long-acting, reversible form of birth control. This device that’s the size of a matchstick is inserted under your skin in your upper arm and steadily releases progestin hormones to prevent pregnancy for as long as five years.
If you’re considering contraceptive implants, it’s essential to understand the range of benefits they offer.
Highly Effective at Preventing Pregnancy
One significant benefit of the contraceptive implant is its incredible effectiveness in helping you avoid pregnancy. It’s considered one of the best reversible birth control methods.
The implant is over 99% effective, meaning fewer than 10 out of 1,000 women using it will get pregnant in a year. Permanent options such as tubal ligation are the only birth control methods more effective than implants.
Another advantage of the contraceptive implant is its long duration of pregnancy protection. Once inserted, it prevents conception for three to five years, depending on the specific brand.
Nexplanon, the only implant currently available in the US, protects against pregnancy for up to three years. This means that after a quick insertion, you’re covered for years without having to think about other forms of birth control.
One great thing about the contraceptive implant is that it’s reversible. If you want children or it’s no longer the right method, your doctor can remove the device. Fertility returns to normal right away after implant removal.
This reversibility gives you flexibility. You can use the implant for however long you want contraception, whether that’s a few months or several years. It doesn’t affect your fertility over the long term if you decide to have it taken out.
Continuing with the theme of convenience, the contraceptive implant is one of the lowest maintenance types of birth control you can get. Once inserted, there is no need to do anything until it’s time for removal and replacement three to five years later.
You don’t have to take a pill at the same time daily or make frequent pharmacy runs for refills. The implant’s “set it and forget it” nature makes staying protected incredibly easy. You can go about your life without contraception constantly on your mind.
Unlike barrier methods such as condoms, the contraceptive implant allows private birth control. Partners do not need to be involved in any aspect of the process.
The implant is discreet once inserted, and you don’t have to discuss it with a partner if you don’t want to. You have complete control over starting or stopping the implant at any time.
Hormonal contraceptives such as pills, rings, or patches contain estrogen in addition to progestin. The implant only uses the hormone progestin and is estrogen-free.
This makes it a great option to avoid the potential cardiovascular effects of estrogen, such as the increased risk of blood clots. The lack of estrogen may also be preferred if you experience adverse side effects from that hormone.
Quick Return to Fertility
When you’re ready to try for pregnancy, the contraceptive implant can be removed, and fertility returns immediately. Some methods can delay your ability to conceive for months after stopping.
There is no waiting period with the contraceptive implant. You can start trying for a baby right after removal with no effects on conception speed.
Endometriosis is a painful condition wherein tissue similar to the uterine lining will grow outside the uterus. It afflicts over 6.5 million women in the US.
The contraceptive implant may ease endometriosis symptoms such as pelvic pain, cramping, and heavy periods. The steady progestin supply may reduce or eliminate periods, limiting menstrual bleeding that exacerbates discomfort.
Reduces Menstrual Cramps
In addition to easing cramps from endometriosis, contraceptive implants may lessen menstrual cramping. Implants minimize the uterine lining buildup that contributes to intense, painful cramping before periods.
For many users, periods also become lighter or stop entirely after getting the implant. This reduces or eliminates the discomfort and hassle of heavy, crampy periods.
Lowers Anemia Risk
The implant’s effects on menstrual bleeding may provide another useful benefit. Heavy, prolonged periods can sometimes lead to iron deficiency anemia when red blood cell counts drop too low.
The progestin in the implant thins the uterine lining and often reduces menstrual flow. In many cases, periods become lighter or stop completely within one to three months of starting the implant.
This drop in bleeding decreases the chances of developing anemia due to monthly iron loss. Lighter menstruation helps maintain adequate iron levels and protects against fatigue and other symptoms of anemia.
Get Expert Guidance on Contraceptive Implants from Raleigh Gynecology & Wellness
The contraceptive implant offers multiple advantages as a hassle-free, long-acting, and highly effective birth control method. It provides pregnancy prevention you don’t have to think about daily while retaining the flexibility of reversibility.
For expert guidance on the contraceptive implant and other birth control methods, turn to the knowledgeable team at Raleigh Gynecology & Wellness. We can help you choose the contraception that suits your reproductive health goals and lifestyle.