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Jolessa is a type of hormonal oral contraceptive that prevents pregnancy when taken properly. It’s a combination birth control pill, meaning it contains two hormones: estrogen and progestin. Together, these hormones prevent you from ovulating. They also cause your cervical mucus to thicken and your uterine lining to thin, making it difficult for sperm to reach and fertilize an egg.
Our team at Nurx™ can prescribe Jolessa at special request or can offer the generic equivalent Setlakin for as low as $0 with insurance or as little as $45 without insurance. To learn more about getting birth control from Nurx, click here.
How Is Jolessa Used?
Jolessa is a continuous-cycle birth control pill that allows you to only get your period four times a year. It comes in packs of 91 pills — 84 active (containing hormones) pink pills and seven inactive (placebo) white pills. You must take a pill every day at the same time for it to be effective. If you skip a pill or forget to take them at the same time of day, they might not be as effective. Consider setting a daily reminder or taking the pill at a convenient time of day (for example, during lunch) so you take it consistently.
When starting Jolessa, take your first active pill on the Sunday after your period starts. If your period starts on a Sunday, start the pill on that day. Then take one active pill a day for 84 days, followed by seven days of inactive pills. You should have your period while taking the inactive pills. After you've completed a pack, start a new one right away, without interruption. Note that it takes about seven days for Jolessa to become fully effective after starting it, so use backup birth control such as condoms during the first week.
Store Jolessa at room temperature, away from light, moisture, kids, and pets.
Is Jolessa Easy to Get?
You must have a prescription to get Jolessa, which most pharmacies and online platforms such as Nurx prescribe as a generic form of Seasonique. Most health insurance plans cover the cost of generic birth control pills.
What Precautions Should I Take Before Using Jolessa?
Before taking Jolessa, tell your Nurx health care provider about your medical history and any allergies you might have. Women who are allergic to estrogen, for instance, can have serious reactions to combination birth control. Tell your provider if you have a history of blood clots, high blood pressure, heart problems, stroke, breast lumps, diabetes, depression, gallbladder problems, cancer, high cholesterol, swelling disorders, severe headaches or migraines, liver or kidney disease, jaundice, or thyroid problems.
Not moving for long periods can increase your risk of developing blood clots, particularly if you take hormonal birth control. For this reason, your medical provider might recommend you stop taking Jolessa or take precautionary measures if you're having surgery, on bed rest, or even going on a long flight.
Don't take Jolessa if you're pregnant or think you might be pregnant. If you're breastfeeding, be aware that the hormones in the active pills can reduce your milk supply.
Jolessa can cause blotchy, discolored areas to develop on your skin, particularly around your face. Wear sunscreen, avoid tanning booths, and limit the time you spend in the sun to prevent this from happening.
Jolessa does not protect you against sexually transmitted infections.
Are There Any Known Side Effects?
Some women experience side effects when taking Jolessa, due to the hormones it contains. Most of these are mild and short-lived and occur most frequently in the week and months after starting the pill. Common side effects include:
- Nausea or vomiting.
- Tender breasts.
- Mood changes.
- Spotting between periods.
- Bloating or weight changes.
- Swollen ankles and feet.
- Reduced libido.
- Increased vaginal discharge.
If any of these side effects continue or worsen after a few months of taking Jolessa, talk to your Nurx health care provider. Also reach out to your provider if you miss your period, as this could be a sign you're pregnant.
Less common, yet more serious, side effects of Jolessa include:
- Blood clotting.
- Severe abdominal pain.
- Severe headaches.
- Increased blood pressure.
- Breast lumps.
- Dark urine.
- Blotchy skin.
- Yellowing of your eyes or skin.
- Vision changes or difficulty wearing contacts.
- Nonstop spotting or heavy vaginal bleeding.
If you experience any of these side effects, call your medical provider right away.
Can I Take Jolessa With Other Medications?
Before starting Jolessa, let your health care provider know about any medications and supplements you're taking, as some can potentially impact its efficacy. These include:
- Rifamycin antibiotics.
- Certain HIV drugs.
- Certain drugs used to treat seizures.
- The narcolepsy treatment modafinil.
- The antifungal griseofulvin.
- St. John's wort.
Some medications can also cause adverse reactions when taken with Jolessa. These include:
- Aromatase inhibitors.
- Estrogen modulators.
- Muscle relaxers such as tizanidine.
- Tranexamic acid.
- Some chronic hepatitis C treatments.
Watch for spotting when taking a medication concurrently with Jolessa, as this could be a sign that it's affecting your birth control.
Vomiting and diarrhea can also reduce Jolessa's efficacy if you get sick before your body has fully absorbed the pill's hormones. If you vomit within two hours of taking your pill, take the next active pill in your pack and use a backup form of birth control.
How Do I Get a Prescription for Jolessa Through Nurx?
Use our online platform to submit a request to get a prescription for Jolessa. Our team at Nurx will review your request, ask you a few questions, and, upon approval, provide you with a prescription.
Can I Buy This Drug Online Through Nurx?
Yes, you can buy Jolessa through Nurx's online platform, and we'll ship it to you for free.
How Long Would it Take to Deliver This Drug if I Bought it Online?
You should receive your shipment of Jolessa within three to five business days of our team at Nurx receiving and approving your prescription request.
Who Makes This Drug?
The generic pharmaceutical company Teva makes Jolessa.
Is Jolessa the Same as Seasonique?
Yes, Jolessa is one of several generic forms of Seasonique, also known as levonorgestrel/ethinyl estradiol.
How Effective Is Jolessa?
With perfect use (meaning you take the appropriate pill at the same time every day), Jolessa is 99% effective at preventing pregnancy. With normal use (if you miss a dose occasionally or don't take the pill at the same time of day), it's 91-95% effective.
Does Jolessa Stop Your Period?
Jolessa does not stop you from getting periods altogether. Rather, it keeps you from getting a period for three months, for a total of four a year. If you miss one of these four periods, tell your medical provider, as it might be a sign you're pregnant.
Can Jolessa Cause Depression?
Rarely, women have reported mood changes such as depression while taking Jolessa. Tell your health care provider if you have a history of depression or develop severe depression while taking the pill. He or she might recommend you try a different type of contraceptive.
What If I Miss a Dose?
If you miss one active pill, take two pills as soon as you remember, and continue taking your daily pills as normal. If you forget to take two active pills in a row, take two pills a day for the next two days. Use a backup form of birth control for the next seven days. If you miss three active pills in a row, continue taking the rest of your daily pills as usual, leaving the three missed ones in the pack. You might notice spotting during this time and should use a backup form of birth control for the next seven days.
Does Jolessa Cause Weight Gain?
Some women report a slight gain in weight after starting Jolessa. However, it's usually due to bloating or water retention, not fat gain, and occurs primarily during the first weeks and months of taking the pill.
Does Jolessa Cause Acne?
Jolessa is more likely to prevent acne than cause it. In fact, some health care providers prescribe hormonal birth control to women to help them manage breakouts. This is because the hormones reduce androgen (the hormone that causes your glands to secrete the oils that can lead to acne) circulation in the body.
How Does Nurx Work?
Nurx is a free platform offering easy online access to doctors and seamless delivery of medications. No more time-consuming trips to the clinic and no more frantic pharmacy runs. We put you in control of your own health, empowering you to get the care you need, when you need it. From diagnosis to delivery of prescriptions, we make every part of getting healthy and staying healthy, better.
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“Demand for Nurx’s services skyrocketed — order volume for emergency contraception, birth control, sexually transmitted infection tests grew 40%, 50% and 100%, respectively. Its total sales climbed 80% year-over-year in 2020”
“For $35, all patients with mild to moderate acne—whether they’re insured or not—can receive an initial medical consultation, home delivery of medications, and a 10-week follow-up.”