The birth control shot (Depo-Provera) is a shot in the arm that will prevent pregnancy for three months. The birth control shot injects the hormone progestin into the body. Progestin works by preventing the eggs from leaving the ovaries, and by thickening cervical mucus to prevent sperm from reaching the eggs. These two processes make the birth control shot, and progestin, effective in preventing unwanted pregnancy.
How effective is the birth control shot?
The birth control is 99% effective in preventing pregnancy when it is used as directed (one shot every 12 weeks). You are protected from pregnancy immediately if you take the birth control shot within the first seven days of your menstrual period. Depo-Provera does not prevent against STDs (sexually transmitted diseases).
How many times do I need to get the birth control shot?
Each shot prevents pregnancy for three months. You should get the birth control shot (Depo-Provera) every 12 weeks in order to ensure effectiveness.
Is the birth control shot safe?
The birth control shot (Depo-Provera) is safe for most women. You should always consult your healthcare provider before making any medical decisions.
Do not take Depo-Provera if you:
- are taking aminoglutethamide to treat Cushing’s syndrome
- are pregnant
- have breast cancer
- have had reoccuring bone fractures or breaks. Depo-Provera may be associated with loss of bone density.