Contraception Stickers (Patch)

A contraceptive patch is a new and one of the most effective birth control methods. It is a small sticky patch about 5X5cm and with a surface area of 20cm. It contains a combination of female hormones (estrogen and progesterone) which inhibit ovulation and prevent spontaneous pregnancy. This birth control method has been recently developed but it has already gained popularity due to its easy of use and effectiveness. Taking into account the mechanism of its action, the patch has another name – transdermal.

How does a patch work?

A birth control patch is a method of contraception having its impact on the endocrine profile. The mechanism of action is rather simple. As it contains estrogen and progesterone analogues, the patch:

  • Completely inhibits the release of the egg from the ovary, so the ovulation does not occur. Even if a man ejaculated inside the vagina, fertilization will not occur as there is nothing to fertilize.
  • Under the action of hormones, the uterine neck produces thick mucus which serves as an obstacle for the sperm moving along the fallopian tubes. The uterine walls become thinner and a fertilized egg never attaches to the uterine wall.

After you stick a hormone patch, every day estrogen and progesterone analogues enter the blood through the skin (transdermally). The patch has its effect for a week.

How to buy a contraceptive patch?

Today there are no problems in buying a birth control patch. Unlike oral pills, injections or implants, the patch does not require a doctor prescription and a medical examination before its use.  You can buy a patch in every drug store. Most likely, you will be offered a birth control patch Evra (it is the most popular and the most effective product at the moment).

Evra contraceptive patch: instruction

A hormone patch is sold in a drug store with instruction for use. Before use, read the instruction carefully and make sure you do not have any contraindications.

You can stick the birth control patch Evra only on certain parts of your body:

  1. Lower abdomen;
  2. Buttocks;
  3. Shoulder blade;
  4. Shoulder.

Take a shower and thoroughly dry the skin. It is not recommended to apply body lotions or other body care products as the patch can fall off. Do not stick the patch if you have a rash, irritated skin or any other skin injuries. Use only one patch (if you stick more than two patches, it can lead to serious consequences). You should stick a new Evra birth control patch on the same part of the body but above or lower the previous patch.

The scheme of using transdermal birth control patch:

  1. Stick the patch for the first time on the first day of the period or on the first Monday after the end of the period;
  2. Change the patch after 7 days;
  3. Change the patch after 15 days;
  4. Remove the patch after 21 day and make a one week break. Usually, the period starts after 22 days and there is no need to use the patch;
  5. After 7 days of the period, stick a new patch again.

Repeat the same until you decide to use a new birth control method or to get pregnant.

Advantages of this birth control method

On many online forums, people discuss Evra birth control patch and it receives a positive feedback. It is no wonder because:

  • The patch is highly effective. According to the results of the studies, its protection against pregnancy is 99%;
  • The patch is replaced just once a week and during the week you will not have to worry about the contraception;
  • There is no need to visit a doctor each time. Changing the patch does not require any special skills.
  • If you decide to stop using the patch, the ovulation is quickly restored and you can get pregnant;
  • Does not provoke infertility;
  • In case you have any negative effects, just remove the patch;
  • The patch can relieve painful menstruations;
  • The patch prevents some gynecological disorders (mastopathy, breast cancer, uterine fibroids, endometriosis);
  • A hormonal patch in menopause helps to regulate the hormonal balance;
  • Smoking and alcohol do not have any impact on the patch effectiveness;
  • You can drive a car and work with complicated mechanisms while using the patch;
  • The price-performance rati is fair.

Disadvantages of this birth control method

Despite all the positive feedbacks about birth control patches, some women are not content with it. Like any other hormone medication, birth control patches have disadvantages:

  1. A patch can fall off after having a bath or taking a shower, after swimming and because of a constant contact with clothes;
  2. A patch is visible on the skin;
  3. A patch does not protect against sexually transmitted diseases or HIV if you have sex with an unreliable person;
  4. Menstrual disorders can occur because a patch has an influence on the female endocrine profile;
  5. As this is a hormone product, a woman may notice changes in her weight and libido;
  6. Like any other hormone medication, a hormone patch can cause headaches, dizziness, allergy and pain in the breasts.

What to do if the patch falls off?

If a part of the patch fell off, press it with your hand to stick it once again. If you failed, stick a new patch.

If the patch fell off completely and you noticed it within 24 hours, just stick the same or a new patch on the same place. Further, follow the usual scheme for using the patch.

If the patch fell off completely and you noticed it after 24 hours, stick a new patch and the day you stick it will be counted as the first day of the period. During the week, it is recommended to use other non-hormone birth control products to prevent pregnancy.