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Contraceptive Ring
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Buy your birth control ring online

If you’re looking for birth control that’s low maintenance, the contraceptive ring could be just the one. You only need to replace it monthly, so it’s not a daily treatment like pills, or a weekly thing like the patch.

Talk to us to get birth control recommendations from our experts. Choose your treatment and order your birth control ring online.

Here’s what's included in the price:
Consultation
Answer a few questions about your health so we can get to know you better.
Free express shipping
Your treatment delivered in secure packaging, in 2-5 business days.
Aftercare
We’ll check in with you regularly to see how your treatment is going.
This page was medically reviewed by Ms Laurenmarie Cormier, Nurse Practitioner on August 02, 2022. Next review due on August 01, 2024.
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    Birth Control Ring: Here's what we've got.
    NuvaRing

    NuvaRing

    etonogestrel, ethinyl estradiol

    Small, flexible ring. Sits in the vagina and works like the pill. Only needs changing once a month.

    • Starting from $529.00

    Your partners in health

    Ms Laurenmarie Cormier

    Nurse Practitioner
    Ms Laurenmarie Cormier

    Registered with NPI (No. 1700446366)

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    Registered with NPI (No. 1710957600)

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    GP Clinical lead
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    Registered with GMC (No. 4624794)

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    Disclaimer: The information provided on this page is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any questions or concerns about your health, please talk to a doctor.

    What is the birth control ring?

    The vaginal ring is a hormonal birth control method, like the pill or the patch. It’s a combined method containing both progestin and estrogen hormones, and it protects you from becoming pregnant unexpectedly.

    The ring is inserted into the vagina. It’s worn for three weeks out of every four, and the ring-free week is when you have your period. Because it requires so little effort to protect you, it’s a great option for women who don’t want to fuss with a pill every day.

    You can’t use a diaphragm, cervical cap or female condom while using the ring, but condoms, menstrual cups and tampons are perfectly fine.

    How does the birth control ring work?

    The vaginal ring works in the same way as the combined birth control pill: by releasing hormones into your body. But instead of every day, like the pill, the hormones in the ring are steadily released into your bloodstream every three weeks.

    The ring protects you from becoming pregnant by stopping ovulation (that’s when an egg is released from the ovary). Pregnancy occurs when a fertilized egg attaches to the lining of the uterus, which becomes thicker every month to make itself more inviting to an egg to embed there.
    By stopping an egg from being released, the ring makes pregnancy less likely. It also changes the mucus in your cervix, so it’s more difficult for sperm to reach an egg.

    The hormones in the ring also stop the uterine lining from getting thicker, so the egg can’t attach to it easily. This last bit is what makes periods lighter for women who take hormonal birth control.

    What are the advantages of using the vaginal birth control ring?

    One of the biggest advantages for women who use the ring is that it requires the least amount of effort. Because it only has to be inserted once a month, kept in for three weeks and then taken out, you don’t have to worry about it every day. This gives it an edge over the pill.

    Depending on when you insert the ring, it will work straight away. So you’ll be protected from becoming pregnant as soon as you’ve put it in. It won’t interrupt sex, and once you learn how to use it, it’s pretty easy to take out and put in.

    With the pill, your protection is lowered if you vomit or have diarrhea while taking it. Because the ring doesn’t involve your digestive system at all, being sick won’t impact how effective it is.

    The vaginal ring can also help with premenstrual symptoms like headaches, stomach cramps and mood swings, and the periods you’ll have while using it should become lighter and easier to manage.

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    Medically reviewed by
    Ms Laurenmarie Cormier
    Nurse Practitioner
    on August 02, 2022.
    Meet Laurenmarie  
    Laurenmarie
    This page was medically reviewed by Ms Laurenmarie Cormier, Nurse Practitioner on August 02, 2022. Next review due on August 01, 2024.

    How we source info.

    When we present you with stats, data, opinion or a consensus, we’ll tell you where this came from. And we’ll only present data as clinically reliable if it’s come from a reputable source, such as a state or government-funded health body, a peer-reviewed medical journal, or a recognised analytics or data body. Read more in our editorial policy.

    How effective is the birth control ring?

    As a method of birth control, the vaginal ring is one of the most effective available. When it’s used properly, it’s more than 99% effective. But when it’s used typically (making the occasional mistake, such as inserting it late), the effectiveness drops slightly to around 91% — which is still higher than typical use for condoms.

    When to start using the vaginal ring

    When to insert the vaginal ring depends on whether you’re already using hormonal birth control or not.

    If you aren’t currently on hormonal birth control, you’ll insert the ring on the first day of your period. You’ll be protected straight away. If you wait to insert the ring between days two and five of your period, though, you should use condoms for the following week as your protection won’t start immediately. Whenever you’re using additional protection, don’t use a second hormonal method. Just use condoms.

    If you’ve been taking the combined pill, insert the ring the day after taking any pill in the pack.

    If you’re switching from the patch, insert the ring on the day you remove the patch. You should avoid any gaps in your protection.

    If you’ve been getting the depo shot, you can insert the ring up to 15 weeks after your last injection.

    You should let our clinician know if you’re switching from another birth control method during your consultation.

    How to insert the vaginal birth control ring

    Before you use the ring for the first time, it’s helpful to see your doctor or gynecologist in person so they can show you how to insert it properly. You’ll easily be able to do it yourself after that (or if you’ve had the ring before and already know the ropes), but it’s good to get a little help the first time to make sure you’re doing it correctly.

    Always double-check the expiration date on your ring before you use it. Then, wash your hands and get into a comfortable position. You can try lying down, squatting or standing with one leg lifted up and balanced on a chair. Take the ring out of its packaging, hold it between your thumb and forefinger, squeeze it and push it up into your vagina using your index finger.

    When you’ve got it in place, you shouldn’t feel it. If you can, or if it feels uncomfortable, you might need to push it in a little more.

    After the ring has been in for three weeks, it’s time to take it out. You should change the ring on the same day of the week that you inserted it.

    To take the ring out, insert your index finger into your vagina and hook it around the ring. Once you’ve hooked your finger around the rim, you should be able to pull the ring out. Taking the ring out should be a straightforward, easy process. If you have any problems getting the ring out, you should see your doctor or gynecologist right away.

    Throw the ring away, but don’t flush it down the toilet. Some brands like the NuvaRing come with a foil pouch you can use for disposal.

    Are there any other birth control rings available besides NuvaRing?

    Annovera is another FDA-approved option you can try.

    Monthly birth control isn’t working for me. What else can I try?

    If you’ve tried the vaginal ring and it’s not for you, birth control pills are an option. You take them on a daily basis. Or if you’d prefer not to have to remember to take a pill each day, there’s the birth control shot, which you get every three months.

    Another alternative is the IUD (intrauterine device). It’s inserted into your uterus by a doctor or nurse, and depending on the type of IUD, it stops you from getting pregnant for five to 10 years.

    Is it easy to switch back to the pill from the ring?

    Yes. Normally you’ll start your new pill the day after removing your ring. It’s a good idea to use a condom for the first week after switching back, just to make sure you’re definitely protected.

    All you need to do is sign in to your Treated account and send us a message. We can discuss switching back to the pill with you and help you find the right one for you.

    Birth control ring: FAQ

    Have something specific you want to know? Search our info below, or ask our experts a question if you can’t find what you’re looking for.

    What side effects can you get from the birth control ring?

    Answer:
    Like any hormonal birth control, you can get side effects with the contraceptive ring. Most of the time, these will go away on their own after a couple of months, when your body has had a chance to get used to the new hormone levels.

    The common side effects are:

    • feeling nauseous

    • yeast infection

    • discomfort in your vagina

    • itching or secretion from your vagina

    • feeling depressed

    • headaches or migraines

    • reduced sex drive

    • acne

    • painful breasts

    • pelvic pain

    • period pain

    • weight gain

    • the ring falling out


    These side effects shouldn’t interfere too much with your day-to-day life, although they can be a bit unpleasant. If you find that they persist and are causing you discomfort, get in touch with us.

    You can get side effects which are more serious too. If these occur, you will need immediate medical attention. Take the ring out and go to the hospital if you:

    • develop signs of a blood clot (persistent leg pain, shortness of breath, severe pain in your chest)

    • experience toxic shock syndrome (sudden high fever, a rash that looks like sunburn, aching muscles)

    • develop an allergic reaction to the pill (swelling in your tongue, face and throat that makes it hard to breathe or swallow)

    • experience liver problems

    • develop gallbladder issues

    • experience high blood pressure


    Serious side effects are rare. But it’s important to get help if you notice any of the above.

    Can the birth control ring interact with other medications?

    Answer:
    Yes. If you’re taking other medications while using the ring, it could impact the effectiveness of your birth control and may cause unexpected bleeding.

    It’s important to let us know during consultation if you’re using other medications so we can help you know whether the ring is safe for you to use.

    The ring can interact with:

    • epilepsy medication

    • treatment for tuberculosis

    • HIV medicine

    • Hepatitis C treatment

    • Griseofulvin for infectious diseases

    • St John’s wort

    • medication to treat high blood pressure

    Does a birth control ring work immediately?

    Answer:
    It can, but it depends on when you insert the ring. Putting the ring in on the first day of your period will ensure you’re protected from becoming pregnant.

    If you’re switching from another form of hormonal birth control, you need to make sure you don’t have any coverage gaps before starting the ring. Leaving a gap will mean you aren’t protected.

    Can the birth control ring help endometriosis?

    Answer:
    Research suggests that the progestin-only pill may be the best option for women who are experiencing endometriosis.

    If you want to use a birth control method to help you with your symptoms, let our clinician know so they can advise you on this.

    Can you get your period with a birth control ring?

    Answer:
    You still have your period once a month when you use the vaginal ring. Sort of. The monthly bleeding you experience while taking hormonal birth control is actually what’s called a “withdrawal bleed,” and it happens because you don’t have a steady flow of hormones that week.

    Since you’re not ovulating and your uterine lining doesn’t build like it normally would, the bleeding you’ll experience on hormonal birth control might look and feel different. We think “withdrawal bleed” sounds a bit Victorian, though, so you have our permission to keep calling it a period.

    Does the vaginal ring regulate menstrual cycles?

    Answer:
    Because there’s a routine with the ring, it’s likely your cycle will become more regular as a result. Some women using the birth control ring know exactly when their period will start and end.

    Can the vaginal ring be used as emergency birth control?

    Answer:
    No. You can’t use the vaginal ring as emergency birth control. Emergency contraception has a specific hormone dose that it needs to work. When you start using the vaginal ring, you should read the package insert that comes with it thoroughly. If your birth control fails for any reason, or if you’ve had unprotected sex, let us know right away so we can give you the right advice.

    Why should I buy the vaginal ring with Treated?

    Answer:
    Finding the best birth control for you can be challenging. We’re simplifying it. Tell us about your health and our clinicians will advise you on suitable options for you. Choose your subscription treatment, and get your medication shipped from a licensed pharmacy.

    We’ll deliver it to you when you want it, and in the quantity you’d like too.

    At Treated, we like to stay in touch. You can ask our experts questions about your birth control whenever you want to. They’ll reach out to you on a regular basis to find out how you’re getting along with your contraception. And if you’d like to make adjustments or try something else, no problem.

    Change, pause or cancel your plan anytime.

    Who can use NuvaRing?

    Answer:
    Most women should be able to use NuvaRing. It’s a type of combined birth control, much like the pill.

    But combined birth control (read: birth control with both estrogen and progestin, the synthetic form of progesterone) may not be a good choice for women with certain health factors. This includes women who get migraines or who are at increased risk of getting a blood clot. If combined birth control isn’t right for you, the doctor may recommend a progestin-only pill instead.

    Is NuvaRing safe?

    Answer:
    NuvaRing is considered a very safe method of contraception. Because it doesn’t have a lot of estrogen compared to other types of combined birth control, there’s a lower risk of estrogenic side effects like heavy bleeding, water retention and nausea. It’s quite common to get side effects when starting a new birth control method, but they’re usually mild and go away on their own after a month or two.

    However, any birth control containing estrogen may slightly increase the risk of certain health problems. Complications from NuvaRing are extremely rare but serious side effects are possible, so you should speak to a doctor if you notice anything that concerns you.

    What are some alternatives to NuvaRing?

    Answer:
    There are several types of birth control ring available including NuvaRing, Annovera and EluRyng. NuvaRing and EluRyng are similar in concentration, meaning they have the same active ingredients at the same dosage.

    Annovera is slightly different, and has a higher progestin concentration and a lower estrogen level. It’s a better choice for women who want to use the birth control ring but have a slight sensitivity to estrogenic side effects.

    For women who don’t want to use a vaginal ring, the combined pill or the birth control patch may be a better option. They’re just as effective as the birth control ring, but you need to take the pill daily and change the patch weekly.

    What should I do if NuvaRing doesn’t work?

    Answer:
    If NuvaRing falls out, refer to the package insert that came with it and speak to your doctor.

    If it has been out for less than three hours, you should still be protected against pregnancy if you reinsert it. If it’s been longer than three hours or you’re not sure when it fell out, you will need to use condoms for a week after reinsertion to stay protected.

    NuvaRing vs. Annovera: which is better?

    Answer:
    Annovera has a different mix of hormones, with a higher progestin level but a lower estrogen level. For women who experienced mild estrogenic side effects such as heavy bleeding, feeling sick, cramps or fluid retention when using combined birth control, Annovera may be a better option than NuvaRing.

    NuvaRing may be better for women who want to lower their risk of progestogenic side effects, like vaginal dryness or lower libido.

    The doctor will be able to help you find the right birth control and make recommendations for you.

    Why should I buy NuvaRing with Treated?

    Answer:
    Treated offers a subscription service for many types of hormonal birth control, including NuvaRing. After an online consultation with a licensed doctor, you’ll be able to buy NuvaRing online and get it delivered to you. Even better? You get refills on a schedule you set, so you don’t have to worry about running out of birth control again.
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