How to Get Pregnant After Depo Shot?

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If you are planning to conceive but have been taking the birth control injection called Depo Provera to prevent pregnancy, then you will want to know whether it is possible to get pregnant after stopping these shots. 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 Depo Provera shot. In this article, we will discuss everything regarding getting pregnant after Depo Shot.

A Guide for Getting Pregnant After Depo Shot

depo shot

Depo Provera is the name of the injectable contraceptive medication also called depot medroxyprogesterone acetate or DMPA. One injection of this medication can provide 3 months of dependable birth control. The Depo Provera contains progestin, a synthetic form of the hormone progesterone. Progestin reduces the ovulation and thickens the cervical mucus, making it difficult for sperm to move through the reproductive canal. This way, even if the ovulation occurs, the sperm is not able to reach the egg in the Fallopian tube and fertilize 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.

Does Depo Shot Cause Temporary Infertility?

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.

Things you can do to get pregnant fast after stopping depo shot

The things you can do to get pregnant faster after stopping the depo shot include:

  • Getting pregnant after depo shot can take some time. Wait for your monthly cycle to return. Meanwhile, keep having regular unprotected intercourse in order to conceive. Ideally, you should wait at least 3 months after your last depo shot before you begin trying.
  • Start taking prenatal vitamins so that your body has the nutrients required to support a pregnancy.
  • Track your periods and make a note of when they become regular.
  • Track your ovulation using ovulation test kits and basal body temperature charts. This way, you can accurately predict when you are ovulating and have sexual intercourse on that day to get pregnant.
  • Plan ahead and stop the depo shots far in advance of the time you want to get pregnant. This will give enough time to get rid of the excess progesterone from your body. It could take at least 5 months after your last shot for you to be able to conceive.

Ovulation after Depo Provera

There are some ways to know if your fertility has returned to normal after stopping the depo shot:

Return of regular menstruation cycle

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. 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.

Testing positive on an ovulation predictor kit

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.

Detecting ovulation using a basal body temperature chart

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. This is an indication that your fertility has returned after your last depo provera injection.

What are the chances of getting pregnant after receiving only one depo shot?

A single shot of Depo gives you 3 months of protection against unplanned pregnancy. However, getting pregnant after 1 Depo shot can take some time. Some women have become pregnant just four months after the last Depo shot. However, it takes that long for all the excess synthetic progesterone to get eliminated from the body.

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. 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.

References

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6230362

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