Contraceptive options.

Ok, I DID search this but all the threads seemed to address fairly specific situations (as is mine really) and I were quite old.

Basically I'm considering my options just now, at 23 weeks pregnant we aren't using any because seriously, it's not as though I can get any MORE pregnant and have only had the one partner. I want to have our cover planned though as I ssem to conceive very easily and Mum did even whilst exclusively breastfeeding. Now last time (after I had my son) I had the implant inserted before leaving the hopsital which worked very well and was convenient as it was sorted and long term, however it killed my sex drive dead and resulted in a very dry year and half for my poor husband. I want to avoid this next time for several reasons (not least that I missed WANTING to want him and felt horribly guilty). The week I had it out my libido reappeared as though it had never been gone and I'd rather like to keep it this time. Our situation is complicated by the fact I have health problems, the ones that affect our contraceptive options are Crohns disease, which is currently in remission but still flares sometimes and with the pill it only takes one bad day for it to fail, and epilepsy. I realise that doesn't immediately sound like a factor but I have a catamenial seizure pattern going back to when I was 11, the implant drastically cut the frequency of 'clusters', I still have seizures regardless but they were far less inhibiting and frequent ON the implant. WIth a 2 year old and new baby that is very helpful indeed. WHilst pregnant my brain is totally screwed. It doesn't work, I have seizures several days a week, am on huge doses of meds and they are considering adding in a 3rd if we deteriorate again (finally on top of the wee setting things alight problem).

Basically I would like to hear people's suggestions on non-oral contraceptives, particularly hormone based ones due to the control the implant gave (it made more of a difference than any single anti convulsant to date) and hear people's opinions of them. I'm also very interested in the effect they've had on women's moods as I'm super-high risk for PND etc and dreading the combined drug reduction and hormone crash that's coming (they have to cut levels within a fortnight of me having the baby really, body metabolises it differently, blood volume decreases etc). So, open floor. Thank you folks x

You could try the Mirena coil, which is a hormal intrauterine coil that releases progesterone. It lasts for 5 years but can have it removed sooner if you wish and your fertility will return pretty quickly. However, some women mood swings, breast tenderness and skin problems. Which is the same for all the hormonal options really...!?

The marina coil is brilliant. It seems awkward getting it fitted, but you can get it done in hospital before you even leave so its really convenient. It makes your periods lighter and you don't get cramp. The added bonus is you get it fitted, which takes about 5 minutes, then you don't need to worry about contraception again for another five years! It has increased my libido, and has helped me lose my baby weight. I have been on the pill, injections and implant and all of them increased my appetite and made me gain weight, not what you need when you've just had a baby! Nearly three years of having it fitted and I can honestly say I will use this contraception the rest of my life!

Thanks. Long term things suit me well due to the seizures (can cause forgetfulness or false memories so thhings that require organisation are less than ideal). Is it painful to fit?

Hi Rowan, so happy things are going well for you and your family :)

This may sound silly, but is there any chance you'd give the Implant another shot? I only say this because I'm now on my second implant, but I actually went through a new round of side-effects when I had it refitted. Just thinking that after a short break, your body might react differently to it?

I have no experience of the Mirena coil, aside from hearing other people's (horror) stories, which I won't post here because you can find some nice terrifying chance-in-a-million experiences with a quick Google search, plus the two lovely ladies above have posted to suggest it.

The only other thing I can really think of is the Patch, which (again) I have limited experience with - but unfortunately my experience extended to helping my friend keep hers attached by sellotaping it to her bum (which, I found out later, is a MASSIVE no-no) - or the Depo injection, which obviously you have for a limited period and also everyone I've met who's had it said they got really bad mood swings off it. So reading the last bit of your post makes me think maybe the Depo isn't they way to go for you, if psychological side-effects are as common as I'm led to believe.

Google has horror stories for everything! My sister's on the patch just now as she also can't touch oral contraceptives (CD) and it's been pretty good but they seem to be recommending against it now, I forget why. THanks Cheer up. Was it a different implant make or exactly the same?

Technically, it was different. My first was Implanon and my current one is Nexplanon, but they are essentially exactly the same product (made by the same company and all).

The ONLY two differences are how it's inserted (Implanon has the terrifyingly massive needle, whereas Nexplanon looked more like a staplegun, with the Nexplanon method apparently reducing the chance of incorrect insertion), and that Nexplanon has a bit of metal or something in it that makes it detectable on an X-ray for if it wanders and they need to locate it to remove it.

Those are literally the only differences. I have no idea why my body reacted to the removal on Implanon and the insertion of Nexplanon, but actually Nexplanon has been far more pleasant to have. It could possibly be because apparently my Implanon was fitted too far up in my arm, but I'm really not sure. Sorry I can't be more helpful!

It's not painful at all, it's just a bit uncomfortable. I don't know if you've had a vaginal examination before but it's like that. They put a dildo shaped clamp inside you, and then they open it so they can see into your uterus and place the coil in the right place. It just feels a bit strange but it doesn't hurt at all. The added bonus is, if you get it fitted in the hospital, and hopefully you have a natural vaginal birth, you'll be quite stretched down there anyway for the first few weeks so it probably won't feel that strange. I had to have a c-section, and the nurse who did mine said its usually much easier with a vaginal delivery. Good luck :)

Thank cheerup, that's really helpful. Was unsure of th difference between the two. I'd consider trying it again but definitely looking at all the options,

I am on the implant, had it in for nearly 2 yrs, i have ADHD and i've noticed when im ot on my medication for my ADHD my sex drive decreses dramatically. I can only have the implant due to the ADHD medication i'm on, i cannot take any tye of pain killers on it (not even ibrofen or paracetamol for period pains when i do have a period), I just have to deal with the pain otherwise it will stop my ADHD meds from working. I've found the ipant rather well with my body, but any contraception can effect people differently, i cant have anything but the implant or the coil as i get pregnant rather easily or i have massive periods (2 1/2 weeks- 3 1/2 weeks). If theres nothing else you can use/take ask them if they will give ou the coil early, as they would have done so for me if the implant didnt work :D

Yeah. I had implant removed 14/12/12 and baby's EDD is 13/10/13. Haven't had a period since before my son though so bit of guesswork! Because my brain takes pregnancy so hard and my meds essentially stop working (it's better than nothing, but there are months where 4 days in 7 I'm not ok) it's not a risk we can take lightly. Do you have any heat packs at all? I found them better for pain than paracetamol and ibuprofen, can't take ibuprofen now either. Causes really nasty ulcers :P not worthwhile!

You can only have the coil fitted six weeks after you have given birth. So make sure you use condoms in the meantime! x

Ok. Thanks. I was shattered for that bit the last time if honest, I'll bear it in mind though if we opt for that and buy a bunch of super gentle condoms :)

i was having the depo provera injection until recently asall hormonal contraception makes me gain weigh rapidly and gave me horibble mood swings, on top of thats the implant made me bleed every day for the year i had it in but depo provera stopped periods completely?!?

depo provera was very good though, once every 12 weeks, no worrying about forgetting it. i cant vouch for it making any difference to your epilipsy or anything though xx

Rowan wrote:

Yeah. I had implant removed 14/12/12 and baby's EDD is 13/10/13. Haven't had a period since before my son though so bit of guesswork! Because my brain takes pregnancy so hard and my meds essentially stop working (it's better than nothing, but there are months where 4 days in 7 I'm not ok) it's not a risk we can take lightly. Do you have any heat packs at all? I found them better for pain than paracetamol and ibuprofen, can't take ibuprofen now either. Causes really nasty ulcers :P not worthwhile!

I use a hot water bottle for when im around the flat, i've tried heat packs they dont do me much justice and i cant really carry a hot water bottle out of the flat with me and take it shopping with me so its just something i have to put up with which unfortunately sucks. I also have IBS too and can't take anything for that, but i've now been told i can get laxative chocolate from the health and herb shop on perscription which wont effect my medication. Atleast the doctors are trying to help me with things that i suffer from :D
I've had to push with the other doctors that arent mine in my surgery for things i really need, where as my doctor will search for anything that can help me, same with my psychiartrist and nurse. So if anything, i would just push and push untill they help you with your problems (:

Why not discuss it with your doctor or family planning nurse? They will take into account all the problems you have had, and will give you better and more personalised advice than a bunch of people on the internet....

I cannot take oral contraceptives and the implants have been ruled out as well. I clot and they are triggered by hormones. I have a mirina coil fitted, it was a little painful but I went against the advice to have it done during a period.

I have not had any skin or weight issues but did have irregular bleeding for the first 6 months. Now I have a very light bleed for 3 days or so every couple of months.

This is something you need to talk to a ob/gyne about.


Why not just use condoms? They are so good these days [and most you can buy on here] so it seems like the logical solution?

My ex had a family history, so she would not take the pill. We got on ok...