The Contraceptive Injection in South Africa – Get My Pill

The Contraceptive Injection in South Africa

If you're considering the birth control shot, you've come to the right place. In South Africa, you have two options when it comes to contraceptive injections: Depo Provera and Nur Isterate.

This article will cover:

  1. Price
  2. How to get a prescription online
  3. Type of contraceptive injections
  4. Benefits
  5. Side effects
  6. FAQs


Some Quick facts:

Effectiveness of the patch picture

The shot is highly effective - as long as you receive each shot on time.

Perfect use: It is 99.8% effective
Typical use: It is  96% effective

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Side Effects
Most common ones are irregular bleeding and increased hunger (resulting in weight gain)
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Depo Provera: You have to go for a shot every 3 months.
Nur Isterate: You have to go for a shot every 2 months.
Picture with light bulb as a demonstration for the birth control patch on how to get it
Simple to Get
A prescription from a doctor is first required. You then need to head to the pharmacy to get the shot.

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From R50 - R150, but it all depends on the pharmacy. Scroll down to learn about costs.


The price of the contraceptive injection in South Africa

You can expect to pay anywhere between R50 - R150  for the injection at almost any pharmacy in South Africa including popular ones such as Clicks or Dis chem. 

It's important to keep in mind that this is just the approximate cost of the shot and not the exact price. Finding the exact price of the shot on the internet is nearly impossible due to government regulations prohibiting the advertising of prescription medication prices online.



The price of the Nur Isterate birth control shot

For this contraceptive injection Nur Isterate, you can expect to pay anywhere between R 58.22 - R 107.19.


The price of the Depo Provera birth control shot

For the contraceptive injection Depo Provera , you can expect to pay anywhere between R 53.93 -R 100.63.


How to get the birth control shot online

If you prefer not to visit a doctor in person for a prescription, you'll be pleased to know that you can now get one online through telehealth services specializing in family planning and contraception.

The old-school method: You'd typically start by scheduling a doctor's appointment and then taking your doctor-issued prescription to the pharmacy, where a nurse administers the injection.

The online route: But with South Africa's telehealth services, you've got choices. Here's how to get your prescription through Get My Pill in 3 steps:

 Medical survey
1. Health Check
Complete a 2-minute health assessment and select your preferred contraceptive brand ( depo provera or Nur isterate)
Digital prescription
2. Prescription
If approved, receive a prescription from our medical team via email
Getting an injection
3. Getting the shot
Visit any registered pharmacy in South Africa for the shot to be administered by a nurse
Button to buy a prescription for the birth control shot



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Unsure about using this method of contraception?

You can book a telephonic consult with one of our doctors which also includes a prescription:

Button to book a consult



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What are some contraceptive injection types?

In South African pharmacies, two common brands of contraceptive injections are often available which are known as Nur isterate and Depo Provera. While both are injections, they may have different durations of effectiveness:

The contraceptive injection for 3 months

  • The birth control shot, Depo Provera, lasts for approximately three months. To maintain its effectiveness, you should get a new injection every 11 to 13 weeks as recommended by your healthcare provider. It does not protect against sexually transmitted infections, so consider using condoms for STI prevention.

The contraceptive injection for 2 months

  • Nur Isterate is another brand name for the shot and provides protection against pregnancy for two months. It contains the progestin hormone norethisterone enanthate and is administered every 8 weeks. It works by inhibiting ovulation, thickening cervical mucus, and altering the uterine lining.


The benefits of using the birth control shot

The birth control shot offers its own set of advantages. Here are some key benefits to consider when opting for this contraceptive method:

  • Only required once every three months ⏳
  • Easy to use, no daily reminders needed 🎯
  • Super private; your secret, your choice 🤫
  • Sorted for 3 months straight; no frequent refills 🗓️
  • It may lead to shorter, lighter periods or none at all 🩸🚫
  • Suitable for those unable to take estrogen 💊
  • Highly effective if administered on time 🛡️



Side effects of the birth control shot

Concerned about side effects? For most South African women, it's not a major issue but remember, your body needs time to adapt to the new hormones. Patience is key.

Here are the common culprits:

  • Irregular bleeding: For the first 6-12 months, your periods might be a bit of a wild ride – think longer, heavier, or sporadic spotting. It's like your body's way of saying, "I'm adapting!"
  • Change in appetite or weight gain: Some women experience changes in appetite or a modest weight gain. Some may gain about 5 pounds in the first year, while others won't experience any weight change at all.


Less common:

  • Altered sex drive
  • Occasional mood swings
  • Hair changes
  • Nervousness or dizziness
  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Breast tenderness

No magic "undo" button for these side effects, but after two shots, if discomfort persists, consider switching methods. Your well-being matters. Serious side effects are exceedingly rare.


This article's information is not meant to be taken as health or medical advice; rather, it is meant for educational and informational purposes only. If you have any concerns about a health objective or a medical condition, always seek the advice of a doctor or other qualified health provider (link).




General FAQs

What are some side effects of the Nur isterate injection?

Common side effects of Nur-Isterate, a hormonal contraceptive injection, may include irregular menstrual bleeding, changes in menstrual patterns, weight gain, mood swings, and occasional skin reactions at the injection site. Individual experiences can vary.


The birth control shot vs the pill, which is better?

The choice between a birth control shot and pills comes down to personal preference and medical considerations. Pills are taken daily, offering reversibility and additional benefits, while the shot, administered every three months, has a higher effectiveness rate but may have side effects. Consulting with a healthcare provider is essential for an informed decision based on individual factors.


What is the price of the contraceptive injection at Dischem?

The price can be anywhere between R50 - R150 for the injection at  pharmacies in South Africa such as Dischem and Clicks. 



FAQs on the Depo Provera Injection:

Can Depo Provera make me gain weight?

Yes, Depo Provera can potentially lead to weight gain in some individuals as a side effect. However, it's important to note that not everyone experiences this side effect, and the extent of weight gain can vary. If you have concerns about weight gain and are considering Depo Provera, it's advisable to discuss this with your healthcare provider.


What are some Depo Provera injection side effects?

Depo Provera, a hormonal contraceptive injection, may have side effects that include irregular menstrual bleeding, changes in menstrual patterns, weight gain, and mood swings. Some users also report headaches, breast tenderness, and decreased bone density with long-term use.


What is the effectiveness of Depo Provera?

Depo Provera is a highly effective form of birth control when used correctly. Its effectiveness rate is approximately 99% with perfect use. However, in real-world scenarios where human error may occur, its typical effectiveness is around 94%, primarily due to missed injections or delayed re-administration. To maximize its effectiveness, it's crucial to receive the injection on schedule every 11 to 13 weeks, as recommended by your healthcare provider.


Can Depo Provera help prevent pregnancy?

Yes, Depo Provera is an effective contraceptive method designed to prevent pregnancy.


What are some Depo Provera withdrawal symptoms?

When discontinuing Depo Provera injections, some individuals may experience withdrawal symptoms. Common withdrawal symptoms can include irregular menstrual bleeding, changes in menstrual patterns, and temporary fertility return (it may take several months for fertility to fully return).

Other possible side effects might include mood swings, headaches, and breast tenderness. These symptoms can vary in intensity and duration from person to person. It's essential to discuss any concerns or symptoms with a healthcare provider who can provide guidance and support during the transition.

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