You cannot remove implants yourself. They can be removed only by a trained
health worker. If you want to use implants, first make sure you will always be able
to go to a health worker who knows how to remove them.
A woman with implants does not have to do anything before sex to prevent
pregnancy. Implants contain only progestin, so they are safe for women who should
not take estrogen. And they can be used safely while breastfeeding.
During the first months, the implants may cause irregular bleeding (in the
middle of your monthly cycle) or more days of monthly bleeding. Or you may
have no bleeding at all. This does not mean you are pregnant or that something is
wrong. These changes usually go away as your body becomes used to having more
progestin. If irregular bleeding causes problems for you, see a health worker. She
may also give you low-dose combined birth control pills to take for a few months.
WARNING! If you have an implant, get medical help if you have any
of these signs:
• arm pain near the implant
• pus, redness, or bleeding around the implant
• the implant comes out
In the first 6 months after birth, most women who breastfeed do not release
eggs from their ovaries, so they cannot get pregnant when they have sex.
Women usually do not get pregnant if they are breastfeeding and:
1. the baby is less than 6 months old, AND
2. the woman has not had any monthly bleeding since giving birth, AND
3. the woman is giving the baby only her breast milk.
If you want to use this method of family planning, you must remember that you
can easily get pregnant if you are giving your baby formula, water, other drinks, or if you
are removing your breast milk by hand to feed the baby with a cup. Also, you may get
pregnant if the baby goes longer than 6 hours between breastfeeding times. After
6 months, there is a higher risk of pregnancy, even if you are breastfeeding as before.
You can get pregnant 2 weeks before your monthly bleeding starts again. So do not wait
for your monthly bleeding to start again before using some form of family planning.
The breastfeeding method does not protect against HIV/AIDS or other STIs.
Also, getting infected with HIV while breastfeeding creates a danger of passing
HIV to the baby. If there is any chance your partner has HIV/AIDS, you should
use a condom each time you have sex (see page 181).
A Health Handbook for Women with Disabilities 2007