Intrauterine Devices (IUD)
An intrauterine device (IUD) is a form of long-term birth control for women. A small plastic T-shaped device is inserted into the uterus and can prevent pregnancy for 3 to 10 years depending on the type of IUD. An IUD is a highly effective form of birth control, but does not prevent sexually transmitted infections.
Insertion and Removal of an IUD
An IUD is inserted by your OBGYN in the office and will only take a few minutes. During the procedure, you may experience side effects like discomfort, cramping, or dizziness. Your OBGYN may recommend an over-the-counter painkiller before the procedure, or use a local anesthetic during the procedure to ease pain. The T-shaped IUD is left in the uterus, leaving 2 small strings outside the cervix for removal.
A follow up appointment may be scheduled after the procedure to be sure the IUD is still in place. Your OBYGN will show you how to check that the IUD is still in the correct position and tell you how often you should check the placement.
Your IUD will be removed when it has reached its expiration date, if you are experiencing a medical problem, or if you plan to become pregnant. It can be removed during a short procedure at your OBGYN's office. Your gynecologist will gently pull on the IUDs strings to pull the IUD through the cervix and out of the vagina.
A hormonal IUD prevents fertilization by making the mucus in the cervix thick and sticky so sperm can't get through to the uterus, as well as keeping the lining of the uterus too thin for a fertilized egg to implant.
Mirena is a hormonal IUD that prevents pregnancy for up to 5 years and can also treat heavy periods. It inhibits sperm from reaching and fertilizing an egg, thins the uterine lining, and thickens cervical mucus to prevent sperm from entering the uterus. Mirena is recommended for women who have had at least 1 child.
Kyleena is a hormonal IUD that can prevent pregnancy for up to 5 years. Kyleena releases the lowest dose of hormones for the longest amount of time, compared to other IUDs. It can be used by women whether they have given birth or not.
To learn more about your birth control options, including IUDs, schedule an appointment with your gynecologist at Seasons OB/GYN today!