Last week we informed you about all the pros and cons of the IUD and IUS. This week HCX wants to introduce you to the contraceptive injection. For those afraid of needles, this probably is not the best choice for you, but despite this one con, there are many benefits that come from this type of contraception. If the needle factor hasn’t put you off- read on to find out more!

  1. What is the contraceptive injection?

This might seem pretty self-explanatory but this form of contraception comes in shape of an injection. There are two types of injection you can have: the Depo-Provera injection which lasts for 12 weeks and the Noristerat injection which lasts for 8 weeks. These both work in the same way, there only difference is that they work for different lengths of time.

  1. How does the contraceptive injection work?

Like the IUS, the contraceptive injection contains the hormone progesterone. If you are not already aware, progesterone thickens the mucus of the cervix which stops sperm reaching the egg, whilst also thinning the lining of the womb so that an egg can’t implant there. This might sound a little bit gross, but you can’t deny progesterone does a pretty important job! The injection is usually injected into the bottom but if you are not a fan of your Kim Kardashian backside, then it can also be done in the arm.

  1. How effective is the contraceptive injection?

According to the NHS, the injection is “more than 99% effective” meaning that “one woman in a hundred will become pregnant”.

  1. Benefits of the contraceptive injection
  • It is useful for those that often forget to take the contraceptive pill as once you have had the injection, it will last for 8 or 12 weeks depending on the type of injection you choose. Make sure you remember to go and have a new jab when it runs out!
  • It only contains one hormone. Most contraceptive pills contain two: progesterone and oestrogen. This means that the contraceptive should have less of an effect on your mood. Say goodbye to the weepies!
  • It is not affected by medication so if you get ill during term time and need antibiotics, your contraception won’t be affected.
  1. Disadvantages of the contraceptive injection
  • This form of contraception does not protect you from STIs so remember to use CONDOMS to avoid any unwanted diseases.
  • For those afraid of needles, it can be a scary experience.
  • Side effects include: weight gain, breast tenderness and irregular bleeding.
  • These side effects do not occur for everyone, but if you do experience them, unfortunately the injection cannot be removed from the body. This means you will experience them for as long as the injection lasts.
  • Your periods may become irregular, longer or stop altogether. However, if the bleeding does become particularly heavy, there is treatment available to help.
  • After the injection wears off, it can take a year for your fertility to come back to normal.
  1. Where can I get the contraceptive injection?

If this all sounds good and you want to find out more about the contraceptive injection. Book an appointment at the student health centre with a doctor, who will happily consult with you about your contraceptive choices. After consultation if you still wish to pursue the injection, they will be able to book you an appointment. If you are unable to visit the student health centre, speak to your family doctor or pop into the local family planning clinic where they will be able to assist you!

We hope that this quick guide has come in handy with helping you make the best decision for you when regarding contraception. If you have any more questions, please visit:


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