Advantages and Disadvantages of IUD Contraceptives

By Nidhi Nangia. Updated: June 3, 2018
Advantages and Disadvantages of IUD Contraceptives

A IUD is a little T-shaped device that is inserted into the uterus of a woman as a method of contraception. When inserted into the uterus, it causes certain changes that make it difficult for an egg to fertilize and implant. It works by causing a reaction that attracts WBC inside the uterus, which produce toxic substances for the sperm. Some IUDs also release progesterone hormone which changes the uterine lining and impairs egg implantation in the uterus wall. It also causes changes in the cervical mucus that inhibits sperm to pass through the cervix. Although this method of contraception has 99% success rate in preventing unwanted pregnancy, it has its own pros and cons. Read this oneHOWTO article to know advantages and disadvantages of IUD contraceptives.

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Who may use an IUD contraceptive?

Almost any woman can use an IUD contraceptive, including a young woman or a woman who never has a child. If you are going for a hormonal IUD, it would be more suitable for you if you normally have heavy periods. There is no right time to get an IUD inserted, as it can be inserted any time during your menstrual cycle, provided that you are sure that you are not pregnant. But it is most recommended just after or during your menstrual periods, during a surgical abortion, or just after an unprotected sex as a form of emergency contraception.

However, there are some contraindications to the use of a IUD, which are as follows:

  • You should not use it if you suspect an infection. Get the infection treated first before getting the IUD inserted.
  • Copper IUDs are not recommended for women who have painful or heavy periods, as it may make things worse by making the periods heavier and more painful.
  • If you recently delivered a baby, you should not get it inserted before 6 weeks.

Advantages of IUD contraceptives

As compared to other types of contraceptives, IUDs have a number of advantages:

  1. IUDs are very effective forms of contraception that have a high success rate of 99%.
  2. Their effects are long-lasting. Once inserted, a IUD prevents pregnancy for 5 years or even more. So, you are saved from popping a pill every night, or wearing a condom every time you have sex with your long-term partner. Just get an IUD inserted in your uterus, and forget about contraception for several years.
  3. Unlike permanent sterilization, the effectiveness of an IUD is completely reversible. You stay infertile for as long as you do not want to get pregnant, and you become fertile again once you get it removed. So, if you get an IUD inserted for 5 years, and you change your mind to have a baby before that, you can simply get your IUD removed, and become completely fertile again.
  4. An IUD does not have any affect on your breastfeeding. So, if you have recently delivered a baby and you are still breastfeeding, you can still get an IUD inserted and continue feeding your child.
  5. Unlike pills and condoms, you don’t need to keep anything by your bed side, and no one would be able to know that you are using this contraceptive. Even if you are traveling, you don’t need to carry anything in your bag.
  6. Copper IUDs are free from hormones, which means that they keep you infertile without causing any hormonal changes in your body.

Disadvantages of IUD contraceptives

Despite all these advantages, there are certain disadvantages associated with using IUDs too.

  1. Once inserted, 1% of women have a risk of infection, and 1% of them have a risk of perforation or damage of the womb.
  2. Copper IUDs may make your periods more painful and heavier than before.
  3. Some women may also develop an allergic reaction to a foreign material inserted inside their body.
  4. In some women, hormonal IUD may cause headaches, acne, nausea, breast tenderness, weight gain, loss of libido, mood changes etc.
  5. In 5% of cases, IUDs come out on their own. That is why, it is recommended to check its strings after each period.
Advantages and Disadvantages of IUD Contraceptives - Disadvantages of IUD contraceptives

This article is merely informative, oneHOWTO does not have the authority to prescribe any medical treatments or create a diagnosis. We invite you to visit your doctor if you have any type of condition or pain.

If you want to read similar articles to Advantages and Disadvantages of IUD Contraceptives, we recommend you visit our Family health category.

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