How Effective Are Iuds At Preventing Pregnancy
Annually, less than 1% of those with an IUD get pregnant, making them one of the most reliable methods of birth control available. Aside from the efficacy of the device itself, IUDs have an additional advantage:
Once inserted, IUDs work as they are meant to and dont require any maintenance or additional action. Human error can cause undesirable results with some of the other hands-on contraceptive methods that are currently available.
More than 99% effective. Meaning, 1 out of 100 people who use the IUD method of birth control get pregnant each year.
How Well Does The Iud Work
Both the progestogen and copper IUDs are at least 99% effective in preventing pregnancy. This means that fewer than 1 out of every 100 women using an IUD will get pregnant each year.
Most pregnancies that occur with IUD use happen because the IUD is pushed out of the uterus unnoticed. This is most likely to happen:
- if you have heavy or painful periods
- if inserted just after childbirth or an abortion
- in women who have not had a baby.
Once inserted, the IUD is immediately effective as a contraceptive.
Types Of Iuds And Their Mechanism Of Action
The intrauterine device is the most effective type of reversible birth control, . Simply put, an IUD is a T shaped device that is inserted into the uterus as a form of long acting contraception. Lets first talk about the main types of IUDs and how they work.
Basically there are two main types of IUDs. Theres a hormonal type which is most commonly sold as Mirena and a lesser-used device sold under the brand name Skyla. Then there is a copper IUD which is sold under the brand name Paragard. Some countries outside the US, UK, Canada, and China still use an inert IUD made of stainless steel but its not as effective as the copper or hormonal IUD.
Mirena releases a continuous low amount of synthetic progesterone which acts to thicken the cervical mucus to keep sperm from penetrating the ovum. As there is some hormonal influence with Mirena, some women use it to help with heavy menstrual bleeding. Its effective for up to five years.
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After Your Iud Is Inserted
Immediately after your IUD is inserted, be careful standing up from the examination table. You might feel dizzy or faint if you immediately try to stand up. Your doctor will likely ask you to remain lying down for a couple of minutes and when you feel well enough to stand, to slowly stand up.
You will need to wait up to 7 days before having sex or inserting anything, including a tampon or douche, into your vagina. After that initial time period has passed, you can have sex again.
The copper IUD, also called ParaGard, starts to work immediately, no matter when you get it during your menstrual cycle. However, hormonal IUDs are not effective for seven days unless you have one inserted during your period. For that reason, you will need to use another form of contraception to prevent pregnancy. If you have a hormonal IUD inserted during your menstrual period, it becomes effective immediately.Regardless of the type of IUD you have, it will not prevent STDs. To protect yourself against contracting an STD from a sexual partner, you must use a condom even though you have an IUD.
How Does An Iud Work
A doctor or other healthcare professional must place the IUD in your uterus. This can be done in a doctors office or clinic on an outpatient basis.
Before its inserted, the IUD is flat. It also has strings hanging from the end. The following steps occur during an IUD insertion:
Once its in place, you wont feel the IUD. The procedure takes only a few minutes. You may have some spotting and minor discomfort for a few weeks after insertion. Your doctor will let you know how and when to check your IUD between visits.
The IUD works by thickening cervical mucus to make it harder for sperm to get through. It also affects the lining of the uterus. This change in the lining makes it harder for a fertilized egg to implant. Some brands of IUD contain hormones to help prevent ovulation.
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Common Side Effects Of Mirena Include:
Pain, bleeding, or dizziness during and after placement. If these symptoms do not stop 30 minutes after placement, Mirena may not have been placed correctly. Your healthcare professional will examine you to see if Mirena needs to be removed or replaced.
Changes in bleeding. You may have bleeding and spotting between menstrual periods, especially during the first 3 to 6 months. Sometimes the bleeding is heavier than usual at first. However, the bleeding usually becomes lighter than usual and may be irregular. Call your healthcare professional if the bleeding remains heavier than usual or increases after it has been light for a while.
Missed menstrual periods. About 2 out of 10 women stop having periods after 1 year of Mirena use. If you have any concerns that you may be pregnant while using Mirena, do a urine pregnancy test and call your healthcare professional. If you do not have a period for 6 weeks during Mirena use, call your healthcare professional. When Mirena is removed, your menstrual periods should return.
Cysts on the ovary. Some women using Mirena develop a painful cyst on the ovary. These cysts usually disappear on their own in 2 to 3 months. However, cysts can cause pain and sometimes cysts will need surgery.
How Long It Lasts And What Side Effects To Expect
The Mirena crash is more uncomfortable than dangerous, but it can leave you feeling low and out-of-whack. The most frequent side effects include:
- Mood swings
- Nausea, bloating, or abdominal pain
- Flu-like symptoms, such as sore throat, muscle soreness, or cough
- Breast tenderness
The crash generally may last one to two weeks , but sometimes it lasts longer.
If your symptoms become too severe to manage, or you have suicidal or self-harming thoughts, seek medical attention immediately.
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Immediate Side Effects After Having A Mirena Inserted
18 December, 2018
The Mirena intrauterine device is used to prevent pregnancy. It is inserted into the uterus by a health care provider. The device is T-shaped and made of plastic. It contains levonorgestrel, a synthetic female hormone that helps in preventing ovulation, which makes pregnancy unlikely. Mirena should be removed and/or replaced every five years. According to RxList.com, Mirena is as effective in preventing pregnancy as sterilization as long as it is properly in place.
What Is A Mirena Crash
Millions of women have used Mirena and had the device removed with no problems. Anecdotal evidence indicates that some women, however, experience a phenomenon which has been dubbed the Mirena crash.
The Mirena crash refers to one or a cluster of symptoms that last for days, weeks, or months after the Mirena IUD has been removed. These symptoms are thought to be the result of a hormonal imbalance, which occurs when the body is no longer receiving progestin.
Some women report that they experience the same symptoms while the IUD is in their bodies, and that these symptoms continue after its removal.
Symptoms and their severity vary, but are thought to include:
- mood swings that are sometimes severe
- delayed fertility
- diminished sex drive
There is currently no data tying Mirena removal with these symptoms. However, this does not mean that these symptoms experienced by some women are not real.
If your symptoms are severe, talk to your doctor. They may have recommendations for alleviating certain side effects. A few suggestions include:
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How To Tell If It’s Still In Place
An IUD has 2 thin threads that hang down a little way from your womb into the top of your vagina.
The GP or nurse that fits your IUD will teach you how to feel for these threads and check that it’s still in place.
Check your IUD is in place a few times in the first month and then after each period, or at regular intervals.
It’s very unlikely that your IUD will come out, but if you cannot feel the threads or think it’s moved, you may not be protected against pregnancy.
See a GP or nurse straight away and use additional contraception, such as condoms, until your IUD has been checked.
If you have had sex recently, you may need to use emergency contraception.
Your partner should not be able to feel your IUD during sex. If they can, see a GP or nurse for a check-up.
What To Expect After Iud Insertion
IUDs are one of the most popular forms of birth control in the United States. Their convenience, safety, and reliability are the main reasons why they are so popular. Before having an IUD inserted, however, you should discuss it in detail with your doctor. Your doctor will help you decide which type of device is likely to work best for you, explain the insertion procedure and how to prepare for it.
After the IUD is inserted, you are likely to experience mild side effects as your body becomes accustomed to the device. This is true whether you have an IUD that releases small doses of the progestin hormone into your system for a few years, or whether you have the non-hormonal, copper IUD. No matter which type of IUD you have, make sure you discuss with your doctor what you can expect and what to do if you have questions about anything.
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Side Effects Requiring Immediate Medical Attention
Along with its needed effects, levonorgestrel may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur while taking levonorgestrel:
- Heavy or light menstrual bleeding
Incidence not known
- Absent missed or irregular menstrual periods
- stopping of menstrual bleeding
What Are The Symptoms Of A Moved Iud
A misplaced IUD may not work effectively as a contraceptive. Hence, you must know how to find out if the IUD has moved. IUDs come with a thin string attached at their end which can be felt through the vagina. To feel the string
- Wash your hands well. Make sure your nails are trimmed.
- Sit or squat and insert one finger into the vagina.
- Feel your cervix .
- Try to feel the string coming out of the cervix. Do not pull or tug on the string.
You may check this every month after your period. While feeling the string you may notice
- The string length seems the same as before. This may mean that your IUD is in its place.
- The string feels shorter or could not be felt. This may either mean the string has curled up or the IUD has moved. Contact your doctor.
- The string feels longer than usual. This may mean that the IUD has moved. Contact your doctor.
Besides the change in the string length, a moved IUD may cause the following signs and symptoms:
- You can feel the IUD with your fingers .
- Your partner may feel the IUD during sex.
- You have excessive bleeding during your period or bleeding or spotting between periods.
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Its Not You Or Me Its The Iud
Complaints about a poking string during sex may be a sign that your IUD isnt positioned correctly or that the IUD strings are too long. Feeling the strings during sex may also mean that the strings just havent softened yet, which is normal in the first few months. Over time, your partner might not feel the strings at all.
Tip: Pain during sex is never the new normal, so schedule an appointment with your gyno if it keeps happening.
Advantages And Disadvantages Of The Iud
Although an IUD is an effective method of contraception, there are some things to consider before having one fitted.
- It protects against pregnancy for 5 or 10 years, depending on the type.
- Once an IUD is fitted, it works straight away.
- Most people with a womb can use it.
- There are no hormonal side effects, such as acne, headaches or breast tenderness.
- It does not interrupt sex.
- It’s safe to use an IUD if you’re breastfeeding.
- It’s possible to get pregnant as soon as the IUD is removed.
- It’s not affected by other medicines.
- There’s no evidence that an IUD will affect your weight or increase the risk of cervical cancer, womb cancer or ovarian cancer.
- Your periods may become heavier, longer or more painful, though this may improve after a few months.
- It does not protect against STIs, so you may need to use condoms as well.
- If you get an infection when you have an IUD fitted, it could lead to a pelvic infection if not treated.
- Most people who stop using an IUD do so because of vaginal bleeding and pain, although these side effects are uncommon.
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Iud Clinical Case Histories
Id like to share some of my more notable experiences Ive had treating women with IUDs. I dont get to see too many anymore, maybe just a few a year at most, as I wont treat a woman with one in. If I see a woman with an IUD, then it is only for one appointment as it needs to be removed for me to help her with her presenting problems. Typically women coming to my practice have already had the IUD removed or never put one in the first place as they know my position on the matter.
Here are several memorable and significant cases Ive seen with IUD use.
My Crash Experience After Mirena Removal
I was off on vacation soaking up the sun, sand, and having lots of fun telling some jokes and then WHAMO. it hit me.
Not knowing about the crash, I had the Mirena IUD removed a couple of weeks prior to leaving for our vacation.
I had trouble with my Mirena from the beginning of getting it inserted. After five years, I had it removed. I could have removed it sooner, but I wanted to keep it in for the full 5 years.
The Mirena crash came out of nowhere.
I went to bed feeling relaxed and happy to be on vacation, and then woke up with a crushing, heavy, almost suffocating feeling of blah. Not just any blah, but an I need to go home now because I cannot stand this feeling anymore blah.
That was just day one.
For four days, I felt a crushing anxiety. Then I realized I was experiencing the dreaded Mirena crash.
I wont lie: it sucked. But after four days, I felt pretty much back to normal. Thank you very much, Mirena.
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Side Effects Not Requiring Immediate Medical Attention
Some side effects of levonorgestrel may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects.
Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:
Applies to levonorgestrel: intrauterine device, oral tablet, subcutaneous implant
What Is The Intra
The intra-uterine device, or IUD, is a form of contraception that prevents pregnancy.
- An IUD is a small, T-shaped plastic device that is inserted into your uterus and has a plastic string tied to the end which hangs down through the cervix into the vagina.
- It is a long-acting form of contraception, which means that once it is inserted you don’t have to remember about it every day or every time you have sex.
- Its effect is reversible which means that your natural fertility returns after the IUD is removed.
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Why Does My Stomach Hurt On Birth Control
The queasiness is the result of estrogen, which can irritate the stomach. Pills that contain a high dose of estrogen, especially emergency contraceptive pills, are more likely to cause stomach upset than pills that have a lower dose of this hormone. Nausea is more common when you first start taking the pill.
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Lower Abdominal Pain Following An Iud Insertion
Its totally normal to experience cramping after getting an IUD.
Cramps actually happen because your body responds to your cervix opening in order to fit the device inside. But just like with every side effect, the duration of cramping may differ from person to person. Severe cramping should also subside right after IUD insertion.
However, the type of your IUD may also play a role in the duration of cramping you may experience.
For instance, with hormonal IUDs like Mirena, women may experience less cramping. On the other hand, with copper IUDs, more cramping should be expected. At times, you might have mild cramps for weeks or even months. However, according to Planned Parenthood, these cramps usually disappear within three to six months.
Irregular and heavy bleeding may also last for three to six months.
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