At Life Care for Women in Gilbert, Arizona, Dr. Linda Sodoma provides a complete menu of birth control options to patients in the Phoenix metropolitan area. If you’re interested in finding a birth control method that’s long-acting, reversible, and highly effective, an intrauterine device (IUD) may be exactly what you’re looking for. This small, T-shaped device is inserted into your uterus and prevents sperm from reaching your eggs. If you’d like to learn more, call or book your appointment online today.
An intrauterine device, or IUD, is a small T-shaped birth control implement that’s positioned in the uterus and left in place long-term to prevent pregnancy. It can remain in place for several years and can be easily removed by a gynecologist at any time.
The two different types of IUDs are:
This IUD physically blocks sperm from reaching an egg. It also releases progestin, a hormone used in many kinds of birth control, to prevent your ovaries from releasing an egg. Progestin IUDs begin working seven days after insertion and can remain in place for three to five years.
In addition to physically blocking sperm from reaching an egg, this type of IUD also releases copper ions, which are toxic to sperm. Copper IUDs start working immediately and can remain in place for up to 10 years.
An IUD is more than 99% effective, making it one of the most effective birth control methods available. In addition to being long-lasting, they’re significantly more effective than short-acting hormonal methods, such as birth control pills, patches, and vaginal rings.
Virtually all women can use an IUD, and it doesn’t require you to think about birth control each day or every time you have sex. It won’t interfere with your sexual activity, either, as neither you nor your partner will know it’s there.
An IUD can be implanted immediately following childbirth, miscarriage, or abortion. It can also be removed by a gynecologist whenever you want to stop using it or wish to start a family.
Progestin IUDs can help regulate your period and reduce menstrual symptoms, while copper IUDs are the most effective form of emergency contraception available. Both types of IUDs may help reduce your risk of cervical cancer.
After reviewing your medical history and performing a complete pelvic exam, Dr. Sodoma places the IUD in a thin plastic tube and inserts it into your vagina. She guides it through your cervix and into your uterus, withdraws the tube, and leaves the T-shaped device in place.
IUDs have two small strings that are left hanging from your cervix, inside your vagina. These strings, which you won’t feel or see, allow Dr. Sodoma to remove the device when the time comes.
IUD insertion may cause minor abdominal cramping or backaches; over-the-counter pain relievers can help alleviate any short-term discomfort.