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Posted on: November 15, 2023

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Female contraceptive implants are small, rod-like contraceptive devices that are inserted under the skin of your upper arm by a medical professional.

The contraceptive implant works by releasing the hormone progestin into the bloodstream. Progestin stops ovulation, thickens the cervical mucus, and thins the uterine lining, all of which helps to prevent pregnancy.1

The Benefits of Contraception Implants

Contraceptive implants are a form of long-acting reversible contraceptive (LARC) that works for 3 years. It has an efficacy rate of up to 99%.2

In addition to the fact that it’s highly effective, contraceptive implants also offer other benefits. It only releases one hormone, progestin, so it’s a good option for those who cannot use estrogen-based contraception.

The Procedure for Insertion of Female Contraceptive Implants

If you decide to get a contraceptive implant, the first step is to consult a specialist. Your doctor will ask you questions about your medical history, and may also give you a physical exam, to assess whether the implant is a suitable contraceptive for you.

After that, the doctor will give you a shot to numb the area on your arm where the insertion will occur. Then, they use a special tool to slide the contraceptive implant, which is about the size of a matchstick, under your skin.

You will feel a little sting from the numbing shot, but after that, you don’t feel pain when the implant is being inserted. The insertion process just takes a few minutes.4

Post-Insertion Care for the Birth Control Implant 

Once the numbing effect wears off, your arm may ache at the insertion site, but this resolves quickly. It’s normal to experience tenderness or swelling around the implant for a few days.3 Follow your doctor’s advice on how to wash and care for the skin around the implant.

If you experience any issues such as prolonged pain or infection, be sure to check in with your doctor.4

After-Effects of Contraceptive Implant

Contraceptive implants can have side effects such as:

  • Changes in menstrual bleeding
  • Headaches
  • Acne
  • Sore breasts
  • Mood swings


Side effects vary from person to person and tend to subside within a few months. However, if they persist, consult your doctor. There could be a way to treat the side effects, or you can try another method of birth control instead.

Contraceptive Implant Removal

Contraceptive implants work for 3 years. After this time, you will need to remove the implant and either replace it with a new one or use a different contraceptive method instead. You may remove it earlier if you want to become pregnant, or if the side effects of the implant persist.

Your doctor will first feel your arm to locate the implant. They will then give you a shot to numb the area. Next, they will make a small cut in your skin and gently remove the implant. Lastly, they will put a dressing on your arm to keep the area dry and clean.5

Consult a Specialist before Choosing a Contraceptive Implant

It is important to discuss your options with a healthcare professional to determine if a contraceptive implant is the right choice for you. Your doctor can provide personalized advice based on your health and lifestyle.

By seeking their guidance, you can make an informed decision about your contraceptive choices. To learn more about contraceptive implants and explore other contraception methods, visit Howuknow today.