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Unit E 310 8th Street
Courtenay, BC
V9N 1N3

Mon-Fri: 8am-4pm

Sat & Sun: Closed

Phone: 250-331-0500

Fax: 250-331-0553

Nexplanon Frequently Asked Questions

How much do they cost?

This is covered by BC Medical.

How long until the birth control implant begins to work?

If you get the implant during the first 5 days of your period, you’re protected from pregnancy right away.  If you get the implant at any other time in your cycle, use another form of birth control (i.e. condoms) during the first week. After that first week, the implant starts working and you’re protected from pregnancy for 3 years.


Is it painful to get an implant inserted?

Most people just feel a little pinch or stinging when they get the numbing shot. You shouldn’t be able to feel the implant being inserted. Your arm may ache a little where the implant was inserted after the numbing wears off, but it goes away quickly. You may have a bit of tenderness or swelling around the implant for a few days and it may look bruised for a week or two.

Keeping the area dry for 24 hours is important afterwards. You should be able to feel both ends of the rod under your skin. If this changes at any time, contact your doctor for a consultation.

What are the risks of using the birth control implant?

Serious problems with contraceptive implants are rare, but they include arm pain that lasts for longer than a few days, an infection in the arm that needs medicine, or a scar on your arm where the implant goes.

Tell your doctor if you have any of the following:

Bleeding, pus, redness, or pain in your arm where the implant was inserted that doesn’t go away.

The implant seems to have moved. Don’t hesitate to call the clinic with any concerns about your implant.

Does the implant prevent STDs?

No. Contraceptive implants do not protect against STDs. Using condoms when you have sex lowers your chances of getting or spreading STDs. Using condoms with your implant is the best way to prevent infections.

Is it safe to use the implant while breastfeeding?

Yes, it’s safe to use the implant while you’re breastfeeding.  It shouldn’t have any effect on how much milk you produce, and it won’t hurt your baby.

You can get pregnant once your implant has been removed.

Contraceptive implants are reversible. If you decide you want to get pregnant, you can get it removed at any time. The implant won’t affect your fertility or make it harder to get pregnant in the future. In fact, it’s possible to get pregnant as soon as it is removed.

The implant can have negative side effects.

Some people have side effects, but many adjust to the implant with few or no problems at all. Negative side effects usually go away after a few months, once your body gets used to your implant.

The most common side effect is irregular bleeding or spotting, especially in the first 6-12 months. Sometimes the implant causes long-term spotting, or periods get longer and heavier. But for most people, their periods get lighter — 1 in 3 people with the implant stop getting their periods all together after about a year.

It’s totally safe to not get a period with the implant. And you don’t need to worry about being pregnant even if you don’t get a period, because the implant is really, really effective birth control. Other possible side effects that aren’t as common include:

  • Headaches
  • Breast pain
  • Nausea
  • Weight gain
  • Pain or bruising where the implant was inserted
  • An infection where the implant was inserted

Is it possible for others to see the implant under my skin?

Once the bruising has gone, you may have a very small scar at the site of insertion, no one should be able to see it under your skin.

Is it possible to have an allergic reaction to the medications used or the implant itself?

It is extremely rare to have an allergic reaction to the implant or the medications used for the freezing.

When should I get the birth control implant removed?

Nexplanon® works for 3 years, and a doctor must remove it once it expires. You can also get your implant taken out any time.

You need to replace your implant (or pick another birth control method), if you’ve had your implant for 3 years and you still don’t want to get pregnant. You can get a new implant when you have the old one removed. The doctor may need to use a new insertion site depending on scarring.

How does it feel to get the birth control implant removed?

Implant removal only takes a few minutes, but the process is a little longer than getting it put in.

Just like with the insertion, a doctor gives you a shot to numb a small area of your arm. Then they make a small cut and remove the implant. You usually just feel a little pinch or stinging when you get the numbing shot. After that, it shouldn’t hurt when they make the incision or take the implant out.

How soon can I get pregnant after getting the implant removed?

It’s possible to get pregnant right away.

What should I expect after I get my implant removed?

You should feel absolutely normal after having your implant removed. Your arm may feel tender around where the implant was for a few days.  It may look bruised for a week or two.

You will be asked to keep the area dry for 24 hours.

Your period will go back to how it was before you got the implant if you don’t replace it.