If you are planning to conceive but have been taking a birth control injection called Depo-Provera to prevent unwanted pregnancy, then you may want to know more about how to conceive after stopping the injections. One shot of Depo-Provera gives you three months of protection from an unplanned pregnancy. It is 97% effective and very reliable. However, it may take some time for you to get pregnant after stopping the use of the Depo-Provera shot. Continue reading to know more about Dep-Provera shots, how they work, how to conceive faster after stopping the shot, and some common FAQs about the same. Also, read about the Depo detox diet to get pregnant.
Depo-Provera is the name of an injectable contraceptive medication, also known as depot medroxyprogesterone acetate or DMPA. One injection of this medication can provide 3 months of dependable birth control. Depo-Provera contains progestin, synthetic form of the hormone progesterone. Progestin reduces ovulation and thickens the cervical mucus, making it difficult for sperm to move through the reproductive canal. This way, even if ovulation occurs, the sperm won’t be able to reach the egg in the fallopian tube and fertilise it. The Depo injection is required every 90 days, unlike birth control pills that need to be taken daily. This is due to the fact that the injection creates a depot or storage reserve of progestin in the body at the site of the injection.
Once you take the injection, the progesterone level in the body rises steadily and peaks at 3 weeks, after which the level begins to gradually reduce. Around 50% of women who take regular Depo injections for a year will stop menstruating. Once the progesterone levels in the body decrease, the process of ovulation and menstruation begin once again.
The Depo shot suppresses ovulation by increasing the level of progesterone in the body. As a result, it can cause temporary infertility for up to 2 years. Once all the progesterone in the body is eliminated, your fertility will return, and your body will resume ovulating and menstruating. Many women tend to resume their regular monthly cycle 5 months after their last Depo injections. However, it may take up to 22 months for some women to regain their fertility post the last injection.
Another aspect that comes into play with regards to fertility is the weight of the woman. It appears that fertility returns more quickly in women of healthy weight (i.e., in accordance with their height and health conditions) than those who are overweight. Also, it doesn’t matter whether you’ve used the Depo-Provera shot for about 6 months or even for a couple of years; your fertility will most likely return in the same time period, in both cases.
If you are planning for a baby and wish to know when you should stop Depo shots, then you must read below.
One could become pregnant as soon as 12-14 weeks after the last shot. It could even take up to one to two years to conceive after stopping with Depo shots. So, if you plan on becoming pregnant the following year, you should stop taking birth control shots.
Pregnancy after a Depo-Provera injection can take a while, and you need to be patient as well as persistent in your efforts to conceive. Following are some tips on getting pregnant after the Depo-Provera shot stoppage:
There are some ways to know if your fertility has returned to normal after stopping the Depo shot:
If your periods resume, it means that you are ovulating normally. Regular monthly cycles should be between 21 to 35 days from the start of one period to the start of the next period. Your cycles should also be consistent, with a small variation of 2 to 5 days. If there is a wide variation between your monthly cycles, it means you may not be ovulating regularly. Talk to your doctor if this is the case. The amount of bleeding should be normal; neither too light nor too heavy. If there is only spotting or very heavy bleeding, it is a sign of irregular menstruation.
If you get a positive result on an ovulation predictor stick, it means that you are definitely ovulating. These over-the-counter test kits are available in pharmacies and are similar to home pregnancy test kits. You need to use urine to test your hormone levels to predict if you are ovulating. The test looks for the Luteinizing Hormone or LH, which increases sharply just before ovulation.
Your basal body temperature (BBT) is the one when your body is at complete rest. This changes when you are ovulating. You can track this at home with a thermometer and a BBT chart. When you ovulate, your BBT will spike and remain high until your period starts. Then, it will decrease and stay the same until you ovulate again. By measuring and tracking your BBT for a few cycles, you can accurately predict when you are going to ovulate.
Many women try out a Depo detox diet to get pregnant after stopping the Depo shot. This is supposed to help your body eliminate all the excess synthetic progesterone from the liver faster. However, while naturopathy prescribes this diet, it hasn’t been confirmed how effective it actually is. The detox diet includes:
Check with your obstetrician before going on a detox diet and including any new foods in your daily menu. This is because some of the herbs and new foods may not be suitable for you and may also aggravate any underlying condition that you already have. You could also be allergic to one or more of these herbs. Having an allergic reaction is not good for your body if you are trying to get pregnant.
A single shot of Depo gives you 3 months of protection against unplanned pregnancy. However, getting pregnant after one Depo shot can take some time. Some women have become pregnant just four months after their last Depo shot. However, it has been found that it takes an average of at least 10 months for women to get pregnant after a single Depo shot. This is because it takes that long for all the excess synthetic progesterone to get eliminated from the body.
If unable to conceive even after stopping Depo shots, then you must consult your doctor in the following cases:
If you want to become pregnant after stopping Depo injections, you may have several questions about how long it will take for you to conceive. Here are the answers to the most frequently asked questions about getting pregnant after a Depo shot:
It takes an average of 10 months for most women to conceive after stopping the Depo shot. However, keep trying as some women were able to get pregnant just 4 months after their last Depo shot. It depends on how much time your body takes to flush out all the synthetic progesterone from the liver. Once all the progesterone is eliminated from your body, you will resume having regular periods and will start ovulating every month.
Yes, you can get pregnant after a Depo shot even if your regular period has not returned. This is because the body can ovulate without a period, too. You normally ovulate for around 2 weeks before your period. However, you will know for sure if you are ovulating when you have a regular monthly cycle and can track your ovulation and periods.
Getting pregnant after stopping Depo Provera shots can take up to 10 months after the last shot. It takes time for you to regain your fertility after the Depo shot. Some women have reported taking up to 2 years’ time to get pregnant after stopping Depo. If you have been trying to conceive for a year after Depo but without any success, then you should consult your obstetrician who may recommend a fertility specialist.
1. Depo-Provera® (Birth Control Shot); Cleveland Clinic; https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/drugs/4086-depo-provera-birth-control-shot
2. What are the disadvantages of the birth control shot?; Planned Parenthood; https://www.plannedparenthood.org/learn/birth-control/birth-control-shot/what-are-the-disadvantages-of-the-birth-control-shot
3. DEPO PROVERA INJECTION; familyplanning.org.nz; https://www.familyplanning.org.nz/advice/contraception/depo-provera-injection
4. Depo Provera; thewomens.org.au; https://www.thewomens.org.au/health-information/contraception/depo-provera
This post was last modified on April 17, 2023 9:47 pm
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