... brown discharge. Is this my period? Am I still able to have sex?
You've chosen the wrong contraception if you still wanted periods.
It's so important to research a drug before you accept it into your body. They all come with risks & side effects, so it's important to understand what you are exposing yourself to. Sometimes you cant go backwards, & undo things.
I didn't research Depo Provera before I got my first shot at 16 years old. I'm 39 now, & going through scans to monitor my bone density, because one of the main risks of Depo is bone thinning (osteoporosis). That is one of the main reasons the Manufacturer advises that you should not be on Depo Provera for longer than 2 years, unless you have no other option for contraception. In that situation they advise you take regular breaks every 2 years. I was not told that.
Most women find that their periods stop altogether on Depo Provera. It is common to have irregular bleeding during the first 2 to 3 shots, though. You are likely to find it stopping & starting, & causing spotting & discoloured vaginal discharge. This is usually until your body adjusts to the artificial hormone. The bleeding may be light or heavy.
You may produce more or thicker cervical mucus, whilst on Depo. I got painful sexual intercourse with it, after a while.
Depo Provera can affect your fertility. The Manufacturer advises that even after just 1 shot, it may take up to 18 months to regain your fertility. For some it's sooner & for others, longer.
Some women struggle to become pregnant after using Depo Provera. You can see that on the Depo Provera forums.
Depo Provera convinces your body it's pregnant. You can get any hormonal symptoms that you'd get with a pregnancy. You often even get lower back ache, as your pelvis expands, ready for a growing baby. As I say, periods usually stop.
Low sex drive is common. Depo Provera is even used to chemically castrate male sex offenders.
Weight gain is another common side effect, so it's worth upping your exercise regime to prevent it. Sometimes you can lose weight on Depo Provera, but more commonly you gain weight.
Always alternate buttocks when you go for your shot, otherwise your muscle can become concave from the shots. Happened to me when I kept getting it in the same side all the time. It went back to normal when I started alternating. Had to figure that out for myself!
It's best given high in the buttock, as it causes less pain. It's painful because it creates a pool of oil-based solution into the muscle, that is released gradually, over the 13 weeks.
I suggest going to the Manufacturer's website, & reading the prescribing information for practitioners. Or ask for the insert sheet, that comes with the shot. There's a lot I've not mentioned.
Hope that helps you.
- Depo-Provera Information for Consumers
- Depo-Provera Information for Healthcare Professionals (includes dosage details)
- Side Effects of Depo-Provera (detailed)
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