The contraceptive implant is a method of LARC (Long Acting Reversible Contraception). The implant, which is small and flexible plastic rod, is inserted beneath the skin in your upper arm. The implant then releases progestogen into your bloodstream which prevents the egg being released during monthly ovulation. It also works by thickening cervical mucus and thins the lining of the womb, reducing the likelihood of pregnancy.

You can have the implant at any stage of your menstrual cycle, providing you aren’t already pregnant. If it is inserted within day 1-5 of your cycle, the contraception will be effective immediately. At any other time of your cycle, you will need to use condoms, or another type of contraception for 7 days.


  • Over 99% effective.
  • Contains just one hormone: progestogen.
  • Once in place it works for 3 years.
  • Don’t have to remember to take the contraceptive pill.
  • Suitable for women who can’t aren’t able to take oestrogen.
  • If there are any unwanted side effects, the implant can be taken out at any time.
  • Fertility will return to normal once the implant is removed.


  • Your periods may change, sometimes lasting longer, at other times becoming irregular or even stopping completely.
  • Insertion and removal must be carried out by a trained doctor or nurse.
  • Some medicines may stop the implant from working. Please let the nurse or doctor know if you taking any other medication.
  • The contraceptive implant does not protect you from sexually transmitted infections, so you will need to use condoms as well.

For more information about the implant, check out this page on the NHS website.

Click for more contraception options