IUD (Intrauterine Device): Side Effects, Benefits and FAQs
Positive “side effects?” You bet. There are actually lots of things about birth control that are good for your body as well as your sex life.
- Easy to use
- Doesn’t interrupt the heat of the moment
- Super long-lasting protection without much effort
- Safe for smokers and those with hypertension and diabetes
- The Paragard brand of IUD doesn’t change your hormone levels
- The progestin IUDs may reduce cramps and make your period lighter. (Some women’s periods stop completely.)
- You can use it while you’re breastfeeding
Everyone worries about negative side effects, but for many women, they’re not a problem.* Most women adjust to having an IUD pretty quickly but give yourself time. It could take a few months.
The most common complaints:
- Spotting between periods (especially during the first few months after you get an IUD)
- Increased period flow (for users of the Paragard brand)
- Cramps and backaches
Other stuff to watch out for:
- IUD slipping out
- IUD pushing through the wall of the uterus
If you still feel uncomfortable after three months, switch methods and stay protected. You’re worth it.
*For a very small number of women, there are risks of serious side effects.
Can the IUD move out of place or fall out completely?
Sometimes. Occasionally it can work its way out, down through the cervix. That’s called expulsion. Can be annoying, and means you don’t have birth control any more, but it’s not usually dangerous.
In rare cases, the IUD can work its way up, and into your abdomen. That’s called a perforation. That really doesn’t happen often, but if it does you would need a surgery to remove it. That’s why women are told to check for the strings: if you can feel the strings, everything’s probably okay.
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