A birth control patch is a kind of contraception wherein a thin plastic patch is placed on a woman’s skin surface. It actually works in three ways. First, it inhibits the release of the ovum or the egg cell from the ovary, thereby preventing its union with the sperm. Secondly, it thickens the cervical mucus plug which inhibits the sperm to meet with the egg cell.
Finally, it changes the structure of the uterus; it specifically thins out the lining of the uterus which prevents implantation.
Prevention of implantation actually has its ethical considerations. Several people believe that life is formed at the moment of fertilization. Preventing the implantation of a fertilized ovum is considered by religious congregations to be a form of abortion. Before utilizing the patch, one must be aware of the considerations and the facts of the birth control patch.
When used, the patch is placed on the stomach, upper arm, torso and on the skin of the buttocks. The frequency of the application is weekly for three weeks. The fourth week should be a patch-free week so as to allow the normal menstruation to transpire. When applying the patch, the same day should be utilized weekly.
The birth control patch, however, is not effective for women who weigh more than 198 pounds. In addition, the patch could not protect those who are taking antibiotics for fungal infections and medications for seizures. In addition, the patch is a regulated drug.
For this reason, this is not an over-the-counter drug which could be purchased anytime without a prescription. One needs to have a prescription made by her doctor before purchasing the product.
Just like some other medications, the birth control patch also has its setbacks. In 2005, FDA released an information which states that the patch contains 60% more Estrogen than the usual pill. Having this said, the patch predisposes a woman to an increased risk in developing blood clots and having strokes and heart attacks.
In addition, exposure to high doses of estrogen leads to further medical complications in the future.
The side effects that are associated with birth control patch utilization include skin irritation, irregular vaginal bleeding, breast tenderness, bloating, weight gain and headaches. These side effects are brought about by the rise of hormones and the fluctuations in hormonal patterns caused by patch usage.
In addition, contact lens problems, depression and yeast infections are also associated with prolonged use of the product.
Because of its adverse reactions and side effects, the birth control patch should never be used by women who smoke. In addition, some conditions are aggravated by the patch. These conditions include diabetes, hypertension, liver disorders, blood clotting abnormalities, uterine or breast cancer, history of heart attack or stroke, chest pains and jaundice.
Women who experience the above-mentioned conditions should consult their health providers first before using the merchandise. One should also take note that the patch does not protect one from sexually transmitted diseases. Before using the product, it would be best to seek the advice of a physician first.