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New Birth Control Patch Twirla Offers a Lower Dose Option

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Now available!

November is #ThxBirthControl month, and this year, we have a new method to be thankful for! The FDA has approved Twirla, a new version of the birth control patch with a lower dose of estrogen than the other patches on the market, Xulane and Zafemy. Twirla is super thin (1mm thick), beige, and circular.

Twirla works in exactly the same way as other birth control patches. Each box comes with three disposable patches. Every week, on the same day each week, for three weeks in a row, take off your old patch and put a new patch on a clean and dry area of your abdomen, butt, or upper body (but not your breasts). After three weeks using the patch, you have a patch-free week before beginning with a new box of patches.

One thing that sets Twirla apart is that the manufacturers included people with a range of BMIs in their clinical trials. So unlike some other methods of birth control, we have good data on its effectiveness in people with higher BMIs. In clinical trials, Twirla was 95% effective at preventing pregnancy for people with a BMI <25. If your BMI is 25 or greater, Twirla may be less effective at preventing pregnancy. Twirla should not be used at all if your BMI is 30 or greater because of decreased effectiveness and a potentially increased risk of blood clots.

To get Twirla or explore your many other birth control options, make an appointment to visit your nearest The Right Time health center.

*We acknowledge that BMI is a flawed measurement for many reasons and is not an indicator of general overall health.

Updated November 2021

Robin Watkins is the Director, Health Care at Power to Decide. Robin is a midwife and women’s health nurse practitioner focused on helping other providers learn how to offer high-quality sexual and reproductive health care. Robin provides clinical care at a community health center in Washington, DC. When she is not talking sex, placing IUDs, or asking One Key Question, you can find her riding her bike on the streets of DC or eating ice cream for dinner.

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