What is an IUD?
An intrauterine device (IUD) is a T-shaped device that gets implanted in your uterus to prevent unwanted pregnancy. It works by altering the movement of sperm so it can’t reach your egg. It’s one of the most effective means of birth control because it requires very little upkeep from you. Once it’s in, there’s nothing left for you to do.
What are the types of IUDs?
There are two primary types of IUDs: hormonal and nonhormonal. They’re both equally effective at preventing pregnancy.
The hormonal IUD contains progestin and stops pregnancy by thickening the mucus in your cervix, which makes it harder for sperm to reach the egg. It also prevents your ovaries from releasing an egg for fertilization. Depending on the type of hormonal IUD placed, it may keep you from getting pregnant as long as seven years.
A nonhormonal IUD contains copper, which is a metal that changes how sperm swims so it can’t reach the egg. A nonhormonal IUD may prevent pregnancy for up to 10 years.
Your specialist at Orange Coast OBGYN can help you determine the type of device that best suits you.
How are IUDs placed?
Placement of your IUD is a quick and relatively painless procedure. To place your IUD, your specialist at Orange Coast OBGYN first inserts a speculum into your vagina to open the canal. Then, using a special inserter, she moves your IUD through your vagina and cervix and places it in your uterus. The entire procedure takes about five minutes.
You may experience some cramping during placement, but any discomfort shouldn’t last longer than a couple of minutes. After placement, you may experience some cramping or spotting. Once placed, your IUD is effective immediately.
What if I want my IUD removed?
Removal of your IUD is even simpler than placement. During removal, your specialist at Orange Coast OBGYN pulls on the string attached to your IUD and removes the device. You may experience some cramping during the removal process.
Once your IUD is removed, you’re no longer protected from getting pregnant. If you’re not ready for children, your specialist may recommend an alternate form of birth control.
For a near-perfect method of birth control, you may want to consider an IUD. The team at Orange Coast OBGYN can help you determine if it’s right for you and expertly insert your device. Call today or schedule an appointment online.