Nexplanon is the new kid on the block in birth control. Approved by Health Canada in 2020, Nexplanon is safe, discrete, and reversible. As one of the most commonly used methods of birth control worldwide, here are some things you should know.
- Nexplanon is a LARC
- What is a LARC? Long-acting reversible contraceptive
- LARCs are the most effective methods of reversible contraception with high continuation rates
- LARCs are recommended as the first line of contraception for Canadian youths by the Canadian Paediatric Society and American Academy of Paediatrics
- Nexplanon is the most effective LARC with a risk of pregnancy of 0.5/1000 women
2. How it works
- A health care professional will use freezing to numb the skin
- A small flexible rod that sits just under the skin is inserted in the upper arm and slowly releases a low dose of progesterone hormone preventing ovulation and thickening cervical mucous
- How long does it take for Nexplanon to become effective?
- Nexplanon becomes effective 7 days following insertion. It is recommended that back up contraception methods be used for the first 7 days following insertion. Remember though Nexplanon does not prevent against sexually transmitted infections, so condoms/barrier methods are always recommended.
- Lasts for 3 years
- Completely reversible
- Safe for women who may not be a suitable candidate for traditional hormone birth control options, including breast feeding
- May reduce menstrual cramps
- May improve PMS symptoms
- May improve heavy cycles
- May stop periods
- Irregular bleeding can occur
- Some people may experience side effects such as acne, headaches, breast sensitivity and mood issues
- Pain and bruising at the insertion site following insertion
5. REMINDER It does not protect against Sexually Transmitted Infections!
If you are interested in Nexplanon, talk to your physician to obtain a prescription.
The cost varies among pharmacies and is covered by many medication drug coverage plans. Avivo Health Alliance has physicians skilled with both insertions and removals and are happy to answer any question you may have.