My New Implant: Birth Control

April 16, 2013

Last Monday I had a form of birth control implanted into my arm. I was unaware of this options when I went to my annual check up but was happy I was told and that insurance covered the full procedure. This implant is called Nexplanon; there's also Implanon that's the same form. Nexplanon is a low dosage birth control that is inserted in your left arm in the form of a shot. The dosage lasts three years releases medication throughout your body over that time. The difference between this and the pill is that it doesn't contain additional hormones so this is the most natural way to use contraception without side effects that I've always struggled with. Previously on the pill I suffered from intense UTI's monthly. It's miserable and always forced me to terminate my usage. I chose this method over a shot because it's lower maintenance where I won't have to visit the doctor quarterly for another dosage. All in all, that's my kind of birth control.

The procedure was fairly simple and easy. First, my arm was marked where the implant would start and end. I was then numbed with a shot which normally takes 5-10 minutes to become active but I was lucky and couldn't feel a thing in 1 minute. The implant is also a shot that's inserted in the same spot that's marked from the beginning. The needled for the implant is extremely large because the implant///rod travels through the needle to be inserted. I felt a bit of tugging and pulling as the implant was placed in my arm and there was a lot of bleeding after but all is all, it was simple.

I was wrapped in a bandage I was to keep on for 24 hours. It's packed tight to help the bruising and bleeding to be minimal. Once I removed that the following day, I was still bleeding for the next 2 days and kept a bandaid on it until it stopped. I have a pretty substantial area of bruising but I tend to bruise easily so it was expected. 

If I were to press down on my arm on either end of the rod you can easily see it there. It's still a little tender and I've been catching myself itching at the irritation from bandaids. I write this at 5 days later and my bruising is worse now than it has been all week but it's definitely not as tender! I made it to the gym this morning to lift for the first time since getting it. I will go back to my doctor in two weeks to check up on the implant and to make sure my healing is progressing correctly.

Like I said before, this is a great form of birth control that's low maintenance and closes to an IUD. Why didn't I chose an IUD? You can read about that, here.

I chose to watch a few YouTube videos and googled images of the insertion and recovery because I wanted to make an educated decision on this process. I fully encourage everyone to do the same if they're considering this method of contraception.

N O T E : it takes 2 weeks for the implant to become fully active.

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