IUD Insertion and Removal
It’s no wonder more women than ever before are turning to intrauterine devices (IUDs) as a reliable source of birth control.
Benefits of IUDs include:
- Long-term protection. IUDs are effective for up to 10 years, depending on the type you choose.
- Convenience. It’s contraception without any fuss.
- Effectiveness. IUDs are more than 99% effective.
- Set it & forget it. There are no pills to remember to take, and you can’t use it improperly.
- Won’t affect fertility. IUDs don’t affect your ability to get pregnant in the future.
- Reversible. You can change your mind at any time – and, once the IUD is removed, the possibility of getting pregnant returns.
If you’ve decided an IUD is your preferred contraceptive choice, the OB-GYN providers at Women’s HealthFirst can help.
What Is An IUD Exactly?
The IUD itself is a small, flexible, T-shaped device that is inserted by a medical professional into the uterus, where it remains for 5-10 years to prevent pregnancy. The most commonly used IUDs release hormones and some of these can even help relieve menstrual issues like painful or heavy bleeding. A nonhormonal IUD made of copper is also available and offers continuous contraception for up to 10 years.
IUD Insertion: What to Expect
An IUD insertion is performed by your provider in the Women’s HealthFirst office. There are no special preparations necessary – except that you may be asked to take a pregnancy test before an IUD is inserted.
The procedure itself is similar to what you’ve experienced during your annual well-woman exam. Your provider will begin with a pelvic exam using a speculum to hold open the vaginal walls. Using a special inserter, your provider will insert the IUD through the cervix and into the uterus. The insertion is relatively quick; you can expect to spend no more than an hour in our office.
You may experience some discomfort or cramping during the insertion, but it should pass quickly. In some cases, mild cramping and discomfort may linger. If you are worried about pain, ask your Women’s HealthFirst provider about using over-the-counter pain medications before the insertion, as well as the use of numbing medication around the cervix.
An IUD insertion can be performed at any stage of the menstrual cycle, as well as right after giving birth. You can resume sexual activity at any time after the IUD insertion. Whether contraceptive protection works immediately or not depends on the type of IUD you’ve selected.
IUD Removal: What to Expect
Removing an IUD is easier and faster than an IUD insertion. It also involves much less discomfort.
Just as with an IUD insertion, an IUD removal will begin with your provider using a speculum to spread the vaginal walls to conduct a pelvic exam and identify the location of the IUD. Using special forceps, your provider will securely grasp the device. The “arms” of the T-shaped device should easily fold and the IUD should slide through the cervix and out of the vagina.
You should never attempt to remove the IUD yourself.
Removing & Replacing an IUD
If you are planning to replace your current IUD, the insertion of a new IUD can be done immediately following removal of the old IUD, during the same appointment.
Choose IUDs for Long-Term, No-Fuss Birth Control
Do you need an IUD inserted or removed? You’ve come to the right place. Our highly qualified OB-GYN providers have the training, knowledge, and experience to help you decide on the birth control method that’s best for you. We regularly perform IUD insertions and removals in our offices, and we have five clinics located throughout northwest suburban Chicago for your convenience.
Schedule your IUD insertion or removal by calling Women’s HealthFirst at (847) 808-8884 or request your appointment now. Established patients can use the online patient portal to request an appointment, message your provider team, and more.