Finding the right birth control requires a good understanding of all of your options. Dr. Nicola Rotberg and Dr. Sarah Jordan at Grapevine Women’s Health and Gynecology in Hillsboro, Oregon, empower women with education so they can make informed decisions when it comes to their health, including birth control. If you’re looking for a long-term, hassle-free birth control option, they may recommend an intrauterine device (IUD). For more information, call the office or book an appointment online.
An IUD is a form of birth control that provides long-acting reversible contraception (LARC). The T-shaped device is inserted through your cervix into the uterine cavity to help prevent pregnancy. IUDs are over 99 percent effective at preventing pregnancy, more effective than the pill, the patch, or vaginal ring. Both hormonal and nonhormonal IUDs are equally effective and may be used for up to 4 or 10 years depending on the type of IUD.
There are two types of IUDs that work differently to prevent pregnancy:
Nonhormonal IUDs may help prevent pregnancy for up to 10 years, while hormonal IUDs are effective for up to five years. The team at Grapevine Women’s Health and Gynecology goes over all your options for IUDs to determine the best fit for you.
IUDs can prevent unwanted pregnancy, but they don’t protect against sexually transmitted diseases (STD).
IUDs are placed in the office. The minimally invasive procedure takes only a few minutes. During placement, a plastic tube with the IUD is inserted through your cervix and into your uterus. The IUD is released from the tube into the uterus and the plastic tube is removed.
Two strings are left that hang outside of your cervix. These strings help ensure that your IUD is in place and assist with easy removal when necessary.
You may feel some mild cramping during the placement of your IUD and scant bleeding afterward. But these symptoms resolve quickly. Over-the-counter pain relievers are recommended for any discomfort.
Some women experience spotting or heavier periods after IUD placement. If you have any complications, call the office or schedule an appointment for an evaluation.
IUDs can be removed at any time. The procedure for removal is simpler than placement. The strings are gently grasped with an instrument and removed with little discomfort.
You may experience some cramping or mild spotting after removal.
Unlike other forms of birth control, once the IUD is removed you can get pregnant immediately.