The Contraceptive Ring contains two hormones, an oestrogen and a progestogen which are similar to the naturally produced hormones by the ovaries. The ring is round but flexible making it easy to insert and remains comfortable for the whole duration. The ring can be easily moved to ensure full comfort. It can be felt whilst having sexual intercourse but most people do not consider it to be uncomfortable or unpleasant. It is highly unlikely to harm yourself or your partner.
The ring provides over 99% contraceptive effectiveness when correctly used.
The contraceptive ring is a round, plastic, flexible pessary device which releases two hormones over a monthly period. The vaginal ring can provide safe and effective contraception without needing to take tablets every day.
The contraceptive ring contains two hormones, an oestrogen and a progestogen, which are similar to the naturally produced hormones by the ovaries. The circular ring is flexible making it easy to insert and remains comfortable during use. The ring can be easily moved to a comfortable position. It can be felt whilst having sexual intercourse but most people do not consider it to be uncomfortable or unpleasant. It is highly unlikely to harm you or your partner.
The ring provides over 99% contraceptive effectiveness when used correctly.
Similarly to the combined oral contraceptive pill, it releases oestrogen and progestogen to the bloodstream through the vaginal wall. It can provide contraception though three mechanisms:
There are certain benefits the contraceptive ring has over traditional hormonal contraceptive pills. A few advantages are detailed below. If you have further queries or require assistance please contact the Doctor or the Sexual Health clinics for further expert advice.
There are also certain disadvantages whilst using the ring.
There are certain conditions which carry increased health risks whilst using hormonal contraceptives, such as the contraceptive ring.
Your risk of blood clotting is increased, especially if you have a predisposing condition or due to certain lifestyle activities.
The risk of blood clots is higher for the first year of using the ring and it is important to understand what to look out for to ensure you remain safe whilst using the contraceptive ring.
The FPA (sexual health charity) and NHS have also stated that research shows a slight increase in the risk of:
There is no specific position, it should be inserted until it is comfortable for you. If there is discomfort, position it until it is comfortable. Most women do not feel the ring. The muscles of the vagina will keep it in place and prevent it from moving around or falling out. If you cannot feel the ring, or it constantly falls out, contact the doctor or health clinic for further advice.
If the ring is expelled for less than 3 hours, rinse with cool water and reinsert immediately.
If it is expelled for longer than 3 hours, or you do not know how long it has been, your protection may be reduced. Reinsert the ring (if in week one or two) and use additional contraceptive methods for 7 days. If it is week three of cycle then insert a new ring or delay for 7 days to allow the withdrawal bleed, then insert a new ring.
If you find that the ring has broken, you do not need to worry. It will not harm you, however you should safely remove the ring and insert a new ring and carry on with your current cycle as normal.
If the insertion is delayed after the 7-day interval by more than 24 hours, you may not be protected. Insert the new ring immediately and ensure you use additional methods of contraception, such as condoms, for 7 days.
If you forget to remove the ring on the normal day then you will still be protected. The 7-day ring free break should be observed and a new ring inserted.
This is known as breakthrough bleeding and is common, especially within the first few months of use. It is usually transient and diminishes with prolonged use of the ring. You can use a tampon or pad which will not have an effect on the effectiveness of the ring.
This is highly unusual if you have used the ring correctly and it is important to discount pregnancy. Take a pregnancy test, if you are not pregnant then carry on with the regular regimen. If you are pregnant then contact the Doctor or the health clinic for further advice. Our Doctors are on hand to provide expert one-to-one consultation if you require information or assistance.
You can safely use the ring 21 days after childbirth. You will be immediately protected. If you insert the ring 23 or more days after childbirth you will not be immediately protected and so it is advised to use additional methods for 7 days
You can safely use the ring immediately if required and you will be fully protected.
Our doctors can prescribe a contraceptive ring called NuvaRing. Further information is given under the heading above. Our doctors will determine your suitability for this ring by reviewing your medical form. It is advised to fill in the form as good as you can and inform our doctor of your current medical circumstance to ensure the ring is safe for you to use.
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