The Pros and Cons of an IUD

Almost all women use some form of birth control at some point in their lives, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Though the intrauterine device (IUD) is almost as effective at preventing pregnancy as female sterilization, the birth control pill is the most popular reversible form of birth control in the US. 

Though rates of IUD use for birth control are on the rise, especially in young women who don’t have any children, you may not be all that familiar with this long-acting reversible contraceptive (LARC). 

Dedicated to ensuring you have all the information you need when it comes to family planning and your health, our women’s health experts at Eve Medical of Miami want to share the pros and cons of using an IUD. 

Pro: An IUD is a very effective form of birth control

According to the Department of Health and Human Services, IUDs are more effective at preventing pregnancy than the birth control pill, patch, ring, or shot. 

Of every 100 women who use an IUD for birth control, pregnancy occurs in one or fewer women each year. The IUD is almost as effective at preventing pregnancy as female sterilization, which is a permanent form of birth control. 

Con: Only your doctor can implant and remove an IUD

The IUD is an implanted device that sits inside your uterus, and it must be placed and removed by one of our women’s health experts. 

Though IUD placement and removal is an in-office procedure that takes very little time and doesn’t require any type of anesthesia, some women may feel uncomfortable about the process or consider it inconvenient. 

Pro: An IUD prevents pregnancy for years

Once your IUD is in place, it prevents pregnancy for 3-10 years depending on the type of IUD we use. 

Hormonal IUDs

Hormonal IUDs are effective for 3-5 years. They contain the hormone progestin levonorgestrel, which thickens your cervical mucus and thins your uterine wall. 

The hormonal IUD works by preventing sperm from fertilizing your egg and making it impossible for an egg to implant itself into your uterus.

Nonhormonal IUDs

Nonhormonal IUDs work for up to 10 years. These forms of birth control are made of copper and plastic. 

Copper is a natural spermicide and prevents pregnancy by altering sperm movement so it can’t reach your egg for fertilization. 

Con: IUD insertion may cause discomfort

You may experience pain and cramping during and after placement of your IUD. We may suggest you take an over-the-counter pain reliever prior to insertion of your IUD to minimize discomfort and cramping afterward. 

Pro: Fertility returns to normal immediately after removal

You can come in to have us remove your IUD at any time. Once it’s removed, your fertility returns to normal immediately, which is ideal for women who want to get pregnant right away.

With other forms of birth control, it may take 3-6 months for your fertility to return to normal, which may delay your ability to get pregnant.

Con: An IUD may cause irregular menstruation

It’s not unusual for women to experience irregular bleeding and cramping the first few months after insertion of their IUD, no matter the type. If the bleeding and cramping lasts three or more months, we may suggest removing your IUD and trying a different type of birth control.

The IUD is one of the most effective forms of birth control and offers many benefits. However, the IUD isn’t for everyone.

To learn more about IUDs and your other birth control options, contact us by calling our office in Miami, Florida, or using the booking tool on this website.

You Might Also Enjoy...

Tips for Talking to Your Partner About STDs

Despite the fact that they’re very common, no one enjoys talking about sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) -- to their doctor or their partner. But it’s an important conversation to have. Click here to get some tips for the STD talk.

How Can I Know If I’m Really Pregnant?

The only way to really know if you’re pregnant is a pregnancy test. But when grappling with this question, you may not be ready to take the test yet. Knowing some of the early signs of pregnancy may help steer you in the right direction.

What to Expect During Contraception Counseling

Despite having many birth control options, you’re not alone if you feel a bit overwhelmed when it comes to deciding which one is best for you. That’s why health providers offer contraception counseling.

Could This Be Causing Your Infertility?

Infertility is common, affecting about 10% of women of childbearing age. Though there are many potential reasons you may have difficulty getting pregnant, finding the root cause of your infertility may increase your chances of conception.

Six Common STDs and How They’re Treated

Though STDs are largely preventable, rates of infection are on the rise. Getting tested and treated for STDs may help stop the spread. Click here to learn about some of the most common STDs and how they’re treated.

Start the New Year Right With a Well-Woman Exam

Women put everyone else’s health needs before their own. But don’t put off your annual well-woman exam, as it’s the best tool to help you stay healthy. Scheduling your exam at the start of the new year is a great way to take control of your wellness.