Birth control is a personal choice for a woman. It can be challenging to choose the option that’s right for your body. The best thing to do is to research each option and discuss with your health care provider what is best for you. The most effective methods are the ones that don’t require much from users. For that reason, according to a recent survey, Hormonal Intrauterine Device (IUDs) are the top choice of OB/GYNs for birth control.
What is a Hormonal Intrauterine Device (IUD)?
IUD stands for intrauterine device. The IUD is a small, t-shaped device that a healthcare professional inserts into your uterus.
IUDs give women long-term protection against pregnancy. Depending on the type of IUD, the device can last between three to ten years. They’re also more than 99% effective, equal to sterilization or an implant. The IUD can also help alleviate menstrual symptoms, and many women don’t experience bleeding or cramping with their cycle while they have the IUD.
Hormonal IUDs release a low dose of progesterone, which typically reduces or stops menstrual bleeding and cramps.
Copper IUDs last for 10 years and are ideal for women who don’t want any additional hormones. Women still experience a monthly period, and the bleeding might be more substantial than usual.
Can I Get Pregnant After an IUD?
IUDs are reversible, and you have it removed at any time. IUDs won’t change your ability to get pregnant in the future. You can get pregnant in your next cycle after removing the IUD.
IUD Side Effects
Some women have side effects after an IUD. Side effects can include:
- Cramping or pain during the IUD placement
- Backaches or cramping for a few days after the IUD placement
- Spotting between periods
- Irregular periods
IUDs Don’t Protect Against STDs
While IUDs are one of the most effective ways to prevent pregnancy, they don’t protect from STDs. Fortunately, using condoms every time you have intercourse decreases the chance of you or your partner giving sexually transmitted infections.
To decide if a Hormonal Intrauterine Device (IUD) is right for you, talk with your ob-gyn about when, if ever, you plan on getting pregnant. Tell your doctor about your menstrual cycle and discuss how an IUD may affect your cycle, what side effects it might cause, the effectiveness, and how long it covers you.