The NuvaRing is a unique form of birth control where a small flexible ring is inserted comfortably into the vagina. It delivers a steady, low dose of estrogen and progesterone which is absorbed through vaginal walls. NuvaRing offers the convenience of once monthly dosing. The ring is placed high in the vaginal canal and left in place for 21 days. Then it is removed for 7 days to allow for a menstrual cycle. The NuvaRing is effective on the first day of use. Although some women are aware that it is place, most can not feel it once it is inserted — similar to a tampon.
Common side effects include headaches, nausea, breast tenderness and an increase in non-infectious vaginal discharge. If the NuvaRing is out of the vagina for more than 4 hours women should use a back-up form of contraception for the next 7 days. Do not use the NuvaRing if you are over the age of 35 and smoke, have a history of uncontrolled high blood pressure, heart disease or a blood clot. Notify your doctor if you develop abdominal pain, chest pain, unrelieved headaches, visual changes or severe leg pain.