Birth Control Patch

 

 

The birth control patch is made of thin beige plastic adhesive measuring about 1.5 inches in length. It has three layers; the backing layer provides structural support, the middle layer contains the active hormones and adhesive, and the third layer is the release liner, which covers the adhesive and is removed before application.

HOW DOES IT WORK?

The user applies the patch to the skin of the belly, upper arm, buttocks, or back and is replaced  weekly. The patch releases ethinyl estradiol (an estrogen) and norelgestromin (a progestin) transdermally through the bloodstream.

The progestin and estrogen in the patch thicken cervical mucus making it harder for sperm mobility, thin the uterus lining making it harder for eggs to attach there, and suppress ovulation.

HOW EFFECTIVE IS IT?

The Patch has a 91% effectiveness for contraception, and if replaced exactly on a weekly basis, it can prevent pregnancy up to 99% effectiveness.

BENEFITS + SIDE EFFECTS + RISKS

Potential Benefits Reversible, makes periods easier to predict, reduces cramps, acne, anemia
Common Side Effects Change in bleeding pattern, may have a longer/shorter/no bleeding during period, spotting, headache, vaginitis, weight gain, acne, cramps, mood swings, depression, anxiety, nausea, breast, back, and stomach pain, skin irritation at patch site
Serious Risks Ectopic pregnancy, serious depression, or increased depressive episodes, serious blood clots, high blood pressure, gallbladder problems, cancerous and noncancerous tumors, ovarian cysts may develop but usually go away, sometimes surgery is needed to remove them

YOU SHOULD NOT USE THE PATCH IF you smoke, are or pregnant or think you may be pregnant, have a history of heart attack, stroke, blood clots, chest pain, undiagnosed vaginal bleeding, liver disease or tumor, high blood pressure, diabetes, headaches, severely high blood pressure, heart disease, have had major surgery, known or suspected breast or endometrial tumors or cancer, if you weigh 198 pounds or more, or may be allergic to its components. Tell your healthcare provider if you have a history of depression, endometriosis, or bone metabolic disease.

Always consult with your doctor for your personal health. Don’t hesitate to voice your concerns with them. They are there to provide you more information and recommendations about the most suitable options for your body and overall wellness.