Depo Provera Injections

Depo Provera® is an artificial hormone that is injected into a girl's arm or upper thigh every 3 months. It is slowly released into the bloodstream. But Depo Provera® does not stop you getting an STI so it's important to use condoms.

Depo Provera® works in 3 ways, it:

  1. temporarily prevents ovulation (an egg from being released from the ovaries every month).
  2. temporarily thins the lining of the womb (uterus) to prevent a fertilised egg from attaching to it.
  3. thickens the discharge (fluid) from the cervix to help stop sperm from reaching the womb (uterus).

Depo Provera® is 99% effective in preventing pregnancy.

Advantages

  • Injections are only required once every 3 months.
  • Very effective.

Disadvantages

  • Does not protect against STIs – protection like condoms must be used.
  • Can disrupt the menstrual pattern, which can causes irregular periods and spotting through the cycle.
  • Can't be reversed, so you have to wait until the injection wears off (3 months)
  • Can cause depletion of calcium from bone, so it's recommended that you take eat a calcium-rich diet, do weight-bearing exercise and avoid smoking.

You can get Depo Provera from your doctor or sexual health clinic.

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