5 Important Questions about IUDs

The following are 5 important questions about Intrauterine Device – IUD’s. This type of contraception is used by millions of women. Initial questions are usually easy to find. These questions really help understand what we can expect and it helps answers concerns we might have.


1.)  What kinds of IUD or Intrauterine Devices are there?

2 main types.

1.)  Non-hormonal Copper IUD  (ParaGard)

2.)  Hormonal IUD  (Mirena)

–  Copper IUD is a copper wire that wraps around the T shape device.

–  Hormonal IUD releases a hormone Levonorgestrel.

–  The Copper IUD is good for 10 years while the Hormonal IUD is good for 5 years.


2.)  Can an IUD be used during breastfeeding?

  –  Yes. Neither will result in side effects or are harmful to the infant. The quality or quantity of the Breast milk is not affected.

condom contraception 3.)  Should I use another form of contraception during the first month of an IUD?

–  For the copper IUD –  It is effective the moment it is placed.  In some cases, it can be effective within the first 5 days after intercourse. This would be considered as Emergency Contraceptive and would be more effective than oral pills.

–  For the Hormonal IUD –  Immediately effective if placed within 7 days after you started your period. Otherwise, used alternative contraception for the first 7 days.

menstrual period4.)  Will an IUD affect my period?

–  Copper IUD –  May cause irregular menstrual periods. Your periods might become heavier and last longer than you are used to. Cramping can be seen. Complete absence of a period is unlikely.

–  Hormonal IUD –  Irregular menstrual periods are possible. Decrease in duration and intensity of your period is often seen. You may experience less cramping. Complete absence of a period is likely but doesn’t occur in all cases.

*** Sometimes heavy menstrual periods or very painful menstrual periods are the primary reasons to get a hormonal IUD.

pregnant-iud-15.)  Can I get pregnant while I have an IUD?

  –  Yes. Although this rarely happens. It is possible. If you think that you could be, meet with your provider immediately.

–  They may want to ensure you aren’t having an ectopic pregnancy. Ultrasound, exam, Blood work, and other evaluations may occur.

–  If you have a normal pregnancy you can than choose whether to continue the pregnancy.

–  If you choose to continue with the pregnancy the IUD will be removed immediately. If you keep the IUD during pregnancy  you will risk your health and your baby’s health.

–  There is a risk of miscarriage when removing the IUD.

–  If the IUD can’t be removed, you will be monitored closely during pregnancy.

Learn more specifics about the IUD or Intrauterine DeviceHere

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