Looking for an effective birth control method and aren’t sure where to begin? Well, this article is meant to help you understand everything regarding IUDs. An IUD typically refers to a T-shaped device fabricated with plastic or sometimes copper. It’s ultra-thin and measures approximately three inches. There are two small strings which hang from its bottom. According to various medical studies, this form of birth control is 99 percent effective in inhibiting pregnancy.
With this device, you don’t need to worry about pregnancy for about 5 years or 10 if it’s made of copper. Research shows that a Mirena IUD has the highest level of patient satisfaction amongst women. No fuss. No daily reminders. No pills. So, if you are planning to get a mirena crash, here is all you need to know.
The Different Types of IUDs
Typically, there are two major types of IUDs. Some produce hormones progesterone or levonorgestrel which stop a woman’s egg from releasing during ovulation. Unlike birth control pills, which produce hormones that enter the bloodstream, the hormones released by an IUD remain localized to the uterus.
Common types of progesterone IUDs include Skyla (lasts 3 years), Liletta (3 years), Kyleena (3 years), and Mirena (which lasts 5 years). As compared to the other forms of progesterone IUDs, Mirena is quite bigger but comes with minimal risks of becoming dislodged. The smaller types of IUDs are usually more comfortable during insertion.
Copper IUDs, commonly referred to as Paragards are the other type of IUDs. They work by thickening your uterine lining to inhibit egg attachment. The good thing about this method is that it doesn’t contain hormones and is a great option for anyone who has hormone sensitivity or those who have had cancer.
When to Get an IUD
You can always get an IUD whenever you desire, as long as you aren’t pregnant. Plus, there’s no minimum age for the insertion of an IUD insertion. They are highly safe and effective as long as they’re used appropriately. Copper (non-hormonal) IUDs may even double serve as emergency contraception when inserted within 5 of unprotected sex.
Some women opt to use IUDs right after delivering. A potential drawback of postpartum IUD insertion is the increased chance of expulsion. An IUD is often considered expelled when it shifts from its correct position in a woman’s uterus or leaves the uterus completely. If you can feel the gadget itself and not just the strings, the IUD could have become expelled. Severe pain and bleeding could also indicate that expulsion has occurred.
IUD Insertion: How It Works
Your gynecologist will insert the IUD inside your cervix and push it through the uterus. Though it lasts only about five minutes, the process can be quite painful. The insertion itself takes only 30 seconds.
Of course, it hurts, but you can always benefit from taking Ibuprofen before insertion. Talk to your doctor first. Often, your doctor will suggest that you come for the insertion during your menstrual period, as your cervix will be slightly more dilated during this time. However, you can still get it done during your normal days.
It might sound scary to have an object inserted through your cervix but remember that’s where a baby passes through. So, it can comfortably handle an IUD. After insertion, you’ll need to abstain from sex for about seven days so that the IUD can take effect.
Does It Really Hurt?
It depends. IUD insertion is less likely to be painful for those who’ve given birth within the past 2 years. One study showed that 4 in every 5 women reported between zero discomfort and moderate pain. And over 70 percent of the participants had never been pregnant.
In another study conducted by Perriera, over 77 percent of women claimed they were satisfied with the IUD insertion procedure, whereas 83 percent claimed that IUD was worth any pain and discomfort they felt.
What Are The Potential Risks?
The main risks of utilizing an IUD include heavy bleeding plus cramping. But this is mainly seen with Paragard, the Copper IUD.
Another scarier risk is “uterine perforation”, which might occur due to wrong insertion as well as the expulsion of the IUD from your uterus during the first year. Though this may sound terrifying, it’s extremely rare. It only happens in 1 out of every 2,000 cases.
Expulsion refers to a situation where the IUD pushes itself out of the cervix. Of course, this doesn’t hurt, but it will prevent the IUD from stopping pregnancy. To ensure that the Mirena IUD is in place, insert one or two of your fingers inside the vagina and check if the IUD strings are in place. It’s recommended that you do this after every four weeks.
Possible Side Effects
Like any other form of birth control, IUDs do come with some side-effects. After the insertion of an IUD, you may develop cramping and bleeding, which could last about one week. Plus, you might experience irregular spotting for the first 6 months. A woman who opts for the copper IUD might experience heavier and more painful menstrual periods.
With the progesterone IUD, a woman’s period may stop altogether. Some may also experience cramping every month without any bleeding. If this happens, don’t be alarmed. All of this differs from one person to another. Rarely will you gain weight, experience acne, or develop mood swings as you might when using the birth control pill.
For those who have a sensitive cervix, the IUD may not be a nice option. If you experience spotting or cervical sensitivity after sex, talk to your doctor immediately. While most people don’t always feel an IUD, those with cervical sensitivity might find it uncomfortable walking around with an IUD inside their uterus.
Knowing the positive effects and risks of getting a Mirena IUD makes it simpler to decide what’s important for yourself. Pain and discomfort shouldn’t make you shy away from using an IUD since it’s always mild and short-term. Besides, there are numerous ways to make an IUD fit your body and lifestyle. However, if you experience adverse side effects after insertion, talk to your doctor immediately.