Once you have made the decision to get on contraception, you will need to decide on a contraceptive method. One popular form is an IUD. It is better than 99% effective, so it is considered the most reliable birth control method available. Let’s walk through what a woman can expect during an IUD insertion.
What Is An IUD And How Does It Work?
An IUD is a tiny T-shaped flexible medical device designed to prevent mistakes like missed birth control pills or forgetting to use a condom. In effect, an IUD changes the way sperm cells move making it impossible for them to reach the egg.
Prior To An IUD Insertion
Before All About Women OB/GYN performs the insertion, there will be several simple tests and some recommendations to make the insertion safe and effective.
They include the following:
- There will be a pregnancy test to rule out whether you are pregnant right now. If you are, inserting an IUD can cause a miscarriage.
- You may get an STD test.
- All About Women OB/GYN will check the size and position of your uterus.
- Your cervix will be cleaned with an antiseptic.
- Take some OTC medications like ibuprofen, Motrin or Advil one hour before your appointment to help minimize any cramping.
- Bring a sanitary pad with you in case bleeding occurs.
The Insertion Process
Expect that the process will take from 5 to 15 minutes.
Using an applicator tube and a speculum, your doctor will insert the IUD through the opening of your cervix and into your uterus. You may feel a bit of cramping upon insertion, but it usually only lasts for a few minutes.
It is also possible you may feel dizzy during the insertion or immediately afterward. Let All About Women OB/GYN know if you are prone to fainting. It is beneficial to bring someone with you to drive home. Let your body give you clues. Some women are fine afterward, whereas others may need some downtime.
It is rare that an IUD slips out of place, but it can happen during the first 3 months. There will be a string 1-2 inches long which comes out of your cervix. You cannot feel it, and it is there for the removal of the IUD at some point in the future.
You can check to be sure the string is still there during the first few months. If it’s gone, call All About Women OB/GYN immediately because it could mean you are no longer protected.
Depending on the type of IUD that’s inserted, you can have 3-10 years of baby-free intercourse.