Health

The Reality of Using IUDs for Preventing Pregnancy

24. Pro: IUDs Are Tiny Devices One huge pro of this birth control is the size. You do not have to worry about it being obstructive… Trista - March 15, 2022
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24. Pro: IUDs Are Tiny Devices

One huge pro of this birth control is the size. You do not have to worry about it being obstructive to your body. In fact, you won’t even feel it usually since it’s only about an inch in length. After the gynecologist inserts the IUD, you can go about your life without worrying about it. It’s so tiny that most people don’t feel it when having sex. Likewise, it won’t interrupt your lifestyle, either, because you won’t have to take a pill every day or get a shot every few months as birth control. Usually, once it’s in place, you do not have to worry about it moving about, but you can check it if you need some peace of mind every so often.

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23. Con: The Procedure Might Be Uncomfortable

For some women, getting an IUD put in place can be an uncomfortable procedure. As your doctor inserts one, it can hurt slightly, like getting a pap smear. You may also feel cramps for some time right after the in-office procedure. If you experience a ton of craps after this insertion, you can take an over-the-counter pain reliever. Removing the IUD years later may also be slightly painful for some women.

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22. Pro: IUDs Last from Three to 12 Years

Some forms of birth control require you to reorder it repeatedly, take it daily, or have follow-ups every few months. After you get an IUD put in, you don’t have to do anything for years. The copper IUD releases copper ions, which are toxic to sperm and has a T-shape that blocks sperm from the egg. You can keep the ParaGard for up to 12 years, and it works immediately after being inserted. The hormonal IUD releases progestin to prevent the ovary from releasing eggs and has the T-shape to block sperm. Depending on the brand, it works after a week of inserting one and can say in for three to five years. An IUD lets you have the freedom of not taking pills or getting shots for years.

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21. Con: Mirena May Cause Endometriosis

Although rare, sometimes Mirena may lead to inflammation of the endometrium, which causes painful cramping and irregular bleeding. It can be excruciating even if you don’t have periods or develop endometriosis from other factors. If this is a concern, and you notice inflammation in the pelvic area, talk to your doctor right away. You can discover if the IUD is the cause and remove it.

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20. Pro: IUDs Can Help with Abnormal or Painful Menstrual Cycles

While IUDs are a birth control method to stop pregnancies, they’re also beneficial for menstrual cycle irregularities, like abnormal growth of the lining of the uterus. For example, if you deal with heavy menstrual bleeding or painful cramps during your period, your doctor might recommend the Minera. This IUD can also help people with endometriosis, endometrial hyperplasia, adenomyosis, anemia, and fibroids.

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19. Con: Hormonal vs. Non-Hormonal IUD Side Effects

While side effects can vary depending on the person, hormonal IUDs like the Minera are often associated with irregular bleeding and cramping. This can improve after about six months, and your period can stop altogether for some people. Other side effects of the Mirena include acne, headaches, breast tenderness, or mood changes. The copper IUDs don’t carry the same side effects because they are non-hormonal. However, you can have heavy bleeding after the doctor inserts this type of birth control, sometimes for about six months. After that, most women have regular periods again.

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18. Pro: IUDs Are Reversible Procedures, Allowing You to Get Pregnant After Removal

If you’re looking to get pregnant in the future, an IUD is a reversible form of birth control, meaning you can still get pregnant after you remove it. In fact, having an IUD and then removing it does nothing to impact fertility, nor does it make it harder for you to get pregnant. A woman can even get pregnant right away afterward and doesn’t have to wait a week for the effects to wear off or anything.

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17. Con: After Inserting an IUD, Some People Can Faint, Have Cramps, Or Heavy Bleeding

You may wonder what it is like to have an IUD put in during your OB/GYN visit. It only takes a few minutes and is like a pap smear, but some women do have side effects from the actual insert (and not just the birth control itself). You will most likely have period-like cramps for a few days, and mild cramping is normal. If it becomes intense, tell your doctor. People can also faint after the doctor inserts an IUD, but this is temporary, and you can rest before leaving the doctor’s office if you need. Irregular or heavy periods are also a side effect of the procedure.

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16. Pro: Copper IUDs Can Offer Emergency Contraception

ParaGard, or copper IUDs, are very effective for emergency contraception. If you get one within five days of unprotected sex, it’s about 99% effective that you won’t continue with a pregnancy if one occurs. Once inserted, you can keep this in for up to 12 years. Thus, you’re protected now and for the future. If you’re unsure whether your morning-after pill will work, consider getting a copper IUD. Although many women get one in the rare event of unprotected sex, the IUD is a valid form of birth control.

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15. Con: Hormone IUDs Can Cause Ectopic Pregnancy

Although an infrequent side effect, IUDs may cause ectopic pregnancies in some cases. These are pregnancies where the fertilized egg grows in the uterus, which can be fatal for both the unborn fetus and the pregnant woman because of internal bleeding. Having an ectopic pregnancy is a very rare side effect. However, it’s best to see a doctor right away if you become pregnant with an IUD. That way, you can discuss all of your options.

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14. Pro: Hormonal IUDs Can Help with Periods

If you opt for a hormonal IUD, you might have more manageable periods. Your menstrual cycle can be lighter, shorter, and even less painful than before. In fact, up to half of the women using Mirena even stopped having a period after about three years. Other hormonal IUDs may have lower results, but they can be a plus. You should keep in mind that after getting the IUD inserted, you may experience bleeding for several weeks in a row, in any case.

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13. Con: The Removal Can Be Uncomfortable, Like When It Was First Put In

In most cases, inserting and removing an IUD should only take a few minutes and have the discomfort level of a pap smear. The IUD should slip out after your healthcare provider gently pulls the strings. However, you will feel cramping, at least for a minute. In some cases, an IUD may not come out that easily, and your doctor may need special instruments. However, removal can still occur in the office of a routine visit. In rare cases, you could require surgery to remove an IUD.

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12. Pro: All Types of Women Can Use the IUD

Although this type of birth control was often ideal for older women who already have children, anyone can use certain types of IUDs, no matter the age. Teenagers who engage in sexual activity can use IUDs to prevent pregnancy, and older women who are concerned about getting pregnant can also get an IUD. Menopausal women may benefit from IUDs due to the hormones, as menopause can cause significant changes to the body. Your doctor may recommend Mirena if you are over 20 years old, but discuss all birth control options to determine the right IUD for you.

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11. Con: Infections Can Occur

Infections are sporadic for IUDs, but they can happen. It is possible to get infections if bacteria gets inside the IUD, and this can occur as the doctor inserts it or during sexual intercourse. If you do develop one, it may lead to fertility issues in the future. Talk to your doctor right away if you have signs of an infection. You can take antibiotics to treat it. Usually, getting an IUD infection is very rare and can be treated immediately, without any side effects.

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10. Pro: Copper IUDs Are Hormone-Free

Are you looking for birth control that’s not hormonal? O maybe you can’t have hormonal birth control. Some IUDs offer a hormone-free experience, which means you don’t have to worry about the side effects of hormonal birth control, either. Copper IUDs have no hormones, which means they can stay put for a longer time. Many women get ParaGard because they use copper ions instead of hormones to prevent pregnancy, can last for up to 12 years, and don’t carry the same side effects like mood changes or acne.

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9. Con: You Could Develop Ovarian Cysts

About 10% of women can develop ovarian cysts within the first year of getting an IUD. However, they often go away after about three months. These cysts are usually harmless and don’t cause symptoms in most cases. However, if you notice signs of bloating and swelling within the lower parts of the belly, it could be ovarian cysts. Furthermore, if you rupture a cyst, it can be excruciating. If you are worried, ask your doctor about them. They may find one during a checkup and let you know. If you notice swelling in your lower abdomen after getting an IUD, pay attention and talk to our doctor if you develop pain.

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8. Pro: It Can Lower Cervical Cancer Risk

For those at risk of this type of cancer, an IUD can help lower the chance of developing cervical cancer. While there is a vaccine for HPV, some do not get it. Certain strains of HPV can cause cancer in the cervix, and other things can lead to cervical cancer, like family history. IUDs help lower this risk, but that doesn’t mean you should skip your cancer screenings. In most cases, if there is something amiss, the doctor will talk to you. Having an IUD in place, though, causes more peace of mind in most cases for people.

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7. Con: You Still Might Get Pregnant, Which Involves Extra Risks

Even with IUDs, there is still that chance that you might get pregnant instead of abstaining from intercourse altogether. For some couples, getting pregnant wouldn’t be the real issue here. Rather, you would be at risk of ectopic pregnancy, early delivery, infections, and even miscarriage. You will most likely have to remove your IUD, but this carries a miscarriage risk on its own. If you decide to take this out, be sure to talk to your doctor to weigh the options and if this is right for you. Although getting pregnant with an IUD is a sporadic side effect, it’s still one to consider.

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6. Pro: Copper IUDs Don’t Have Blood Clot Side Effects

Copper IUDs are hormone-free, so they do not have the same side effects as hormonal birth control, Mirena. If you’re at risk for blood clots, a copper IUD is one way to prevent them. Blood clots can be a hormone risk, and usually, copper IUDs don’t carry this risk. However, if you’ve had fibroids or other uterine abnormalities, the copper IUD might not suit you. While there are pros and cons to ParaGard, the lack of hormones removes the risks of possible hormone-related issues. Thus, this type of birth control can help prevent blood clots and other related problems.

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5. Con: The Risk of Expulsion

Expulsion is another major issue that women have to consider when getting this type of birth control. This hazard is where the body pushes out the IUD out. It happens to 3% of women, which is a low risk but not impossible. However, the rate is higher for women who have been pregnant before. Usually, expulsion causes pain and bleeding, but most women don’t have any symptoms. Again, the best way to check to see if your IUD fell out is to feel for the strings. If you find it in your undergarments, don’t try to put it back in. While this is rare, attempting to insert it yourself after expulsion might lead to more problems. Immediately see your doctor to either get another one or discuss different types of birth control.

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4. Pro: Insurance May Cover Your IUD

It can be a costly procedure to get an IUD without insurance like any healthcare service, and a hormonal IUD is slightly more expensive than a copper one. However, if you have health insurance, it probably covers this form of birth control. Besides, it shouldn’t be a problem if you need to get an IUD to help with painful period symptoms and other conditions. Talk to your doctor and see if they can work it out that you get this for a lower cost or free in some cases, depending on your insurance. Besides, even if you do have to pay to get an IUD inserted and removed, it is the cheapest form of birth control because it last for years.

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3. Con: IUDs Increases the Risk of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

Although rare, pelvic inflammatory disease or PID is another side effect women may get due to an IUD. This usually happens within the first 20 days after a doctor inserts an IUD. Furthermore, it develops in 0.5% of cases over three to six months. The condition causes inflammation and infection of the reproductive system organs in women. Although PID usually comes from sexually transmitted bacteria spreading from the vagina to the uterus, fallopian tubes, or ovaries. In other cases, STIs can cause pelvic inflammatory disease. Nevertheless, having an IUD increases the risk of pelvic inflammatory disease. If you do notice the symptoms of this disease, you should see a doctor remove your IUD. If you don’t take care of it now, it may lead to infertility. Although the pelvic inflammatory disease is a concern for some women who get an IUD, it’s a rare circumstance that usually only affects a small percentage of women.

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2. Pro: Rest Assured Knowing IUDs Are 99% Effective

Despite everything mentioned, all of the cons as well as some pros perhaps, the bottom line is that an IUD can prevent pregnancy. While it doesn’t protect you from STDs or STIs, an IUD does protect you from pregnancy. It’s actually one of the best pregnancy protection resources out there. Why? It is simple to use because all you have to do is a regular gynecologist visit to have them insert one. Then, you can come back years later to remove it — and do nothing in between. It is also one of the most affordable, whether your insurance covers one or not because it lasts for so many years.

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1. Con: You Can’t Remove an IUD on Your Own

There might be several reasons to remove your IUD, but you must never attempt to do it on your own. Although you can simply stop taking the pill or skip a shot, you can’t do much with your IUD on your own besides checking to see if the strings are still in place. As tempting as it is just to yank it out, that can do more harm than good, especially if it hasn’t moved all that much in the years you’ve had it. Besides, you can get pregnant or possibly use another birth control after removing it. Some bodies may reject their IUD, especially if it causes harmful side effects. If you need to remove this, make sure that you have a doctor do it, as it’s a finite process that you don’t want to mess up.

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