A form of birth control claims to make family planning as easy as putting on jewellery. Confused? Introducing, Contraceptive Jewellery – the newest form of birth control. Scientists who developed this crazy method say it will make family planning easier for women, who majorly bear the brunt of contraception. So will wearing a simple piece of jewellery suffice? Shall we say goodbye to pills and condoms forever? Not so fast! Here’s everything you need to know.
What is Contraceptive Jewellery?
Researchers have developed a novel technique, which effectively delivers contraceptive hormones to the body through the skin. Jewellery such as earrings, rings or necklaces will serve as conduits for the drugs to seep through the skin.
The pieces of jewellery will contain sufficient amounts of hormones that prevent conception through a dermal patch. These patches, which will be in close contact with the skin, will deliver the drug into the body.
But the trick lies not in the jewellery, but a patch attached to the pieces like earrings.
The earring patch consists of three layers. One is impermeable, with an adhesive to hold it onto the back of an earring or the underside of a wristwatch, necklace or a ring.
The middle layer sandwiches the contraceptive drug in a solid form. The third outer layer sticks to the skin, conveying the drug into the body. Don’t Like Wearing Condoms While Having Sex? New Side-Effect Free Male Contraceptive EP055 Developed By Scientists.
The drug can eventually run out. So the earring back would need to be changed on a weekly basis.
What Does Research Say?
The report of the initial testing of this jewellery was published in the Journal of Controlled Release. It says that that the technique will be effective in contraception, although it hasn’t been tested on humans yet.
Researchers used the technique on animals such as pigs and hairless rats. Test patches on earring backs with the hormone levonorgestrel were applied on their skins.
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The earring patches were then removed for eight hours during and kept on for 16 hours to simulate women’s regimen. Test results showed that the patch produced enough hormones to stop pregnancy in the lab animals.
How Is Contraceptive Jewellery Different From Other Methods?
Missing a dose of your contraceptive pills may increase your risk of pregnancy. Therefore, strict compliance is necessary. The purpose of the jewellery is to improve user compliance with drug regimens, since effective contraception requires regular dosages.
"The more contraceptive options that are available, the more likely it is that the needs of individual women can be met," said Mark Prausnitz, at the Georgia Institute of Technology in the US. 3 Things You Should Know About Male Contraceptive Pills or DMAU.
By simply putting on a pair of earrings, users can ensure that the right amount of hormones required to stall contraception is absorbed by the body. It may also help women comply with the drug regimen, without having to miss the pills.
The best part is that the patches can be worn with different pairs of earrings or jewellery. But the method is not limited to contraception. The jewellery-based technique can be used for delivering other drugs through the skin.
(With PTI inputs)