I’m back into blogging full-force with my experience of getting an IUD. As I’ve had no experience with them before I thought I’d share the questions I had and how I found the whole experience.
Over the past 6-ish months, I’ve been thinking about getting an IUD. I’ve been on the pill for almost 10 years now, and over the past few years I’ve noticed my mood swings a lot more and I was always quite down and just flat. I put in a bit of research and spoke with my Doctor and finally came to the conclusion that getting an IUD would benefit me.
There are two types of IUD’s here in New Zealand: copper and the Mirena. Although both IUD’s are inserted and cared for in the same way, they work differently. The copper IUD is obviously made from copper and therefore has no hormones. The copper basically acts a sperm-ophobe and therefore repels the sperm from reaching the eggs. Since there are no hormones, I’ve read that some women do get heavier more painful periods for the first few months, but after that you’re back to your normal cycle. Also you can’t have the copper IUD IF you’re allergic to copper! The Mirena is a hormonal IUD releasing the similar hormones to the pill to repel the sperm. Because of these hormones, most women have found they have little to no period every month (basically think of it as not taking your “period” break between your pill packets.)
The benefits from having an IUD are not having to take a pill at the same time every day, they have a 99% success rate for up to 10 years, they are an emergency contraceptive (meaning they work right away), and you don’t have to keep seeing your Doctor every few months for a repeat in prescription (which is more cost effective in the long run!)
Which IUD did I chose and why? I chose to go with the copper IUD for a few different reasons. Firstly, here in New Zealand the copper IUD has is funded by the government, therefore no money is coming out of your pocket (compared to the Mirena which I was quoted $350+). Another thing I was surprisingly quite attracted to was the idea of regular periods as a peace of mind every month. With the Mirena you don’t get that, and I know *me being me* I’d constantly be wondering if I’m pregnant or not.
My experience getting it in: I am writing this about an hour after laying on the bed getting it inserted. Before heading out, I did take two pain-relief medications, which I had read helps you with the pain of it all. Once I had arrived, I went into the Doctor’s room, she made sure I totally understood everything and made me feel as comfortable as possible. I then obviously stripped waist down and jumped up on the bed, quite eager for this to be all over and done with. After doing the smear, she popped a speculum in and widened my opening (gosh this feels so weird to write about lol). Then I assumed she put the tube up and checked the wall to my cervix was opening for her, this part onwards is where it gets quite painful and uncomfortable. I wouldn’t describe the pain as “intense” but I certainly felt crampy, hot, dizzy and faint for the next few minutes as she put the tubes up and inserted the IUD. But before I knew it the cramping had subsided and the speculum was taken off. All in all, it only took about 5 minutes as I was staring at the clock trying to distract myself. An hour later, I am feeling quite good… Just have that feeling in my stomach like my period is coming and that I’ve inserted a tampon wrong in my vagina. I think I will definitely be taking some pain-killers again tonight, and maybe some tomorrow if I’m still feeling like this. Obviously every woman is different and will feel different things. Just want to remind you that my experience won’t be the same as yours!
I just have to go back in 6 weeks with my smear results, and she’ll check that I have no pain and make sure the strings are still there. Otherwise, I won’t have to see her until I want it taken out!
Overall, the experience with this was very comfortable, not awkward and quite straightforward and quick! I was only there for about 25 minutes total and was able to walk out with no problems. I would definitely recommend it to anyone who has been thinking about it. If you’re scared, honestly don’t be ❤ Just gotta remind yourself it’ll be over before you know it, and it’s their job to look down there and make sure everything goes smoothly. And you don’t have to see anyone else regarding that region until you either need another smear or you need it removed. YAY!