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What is the hormonal IUD?
An IUD is a soft, small, and flexible t-shaped piece of plastic that keeps you from getting pregnant. There are two types of IUDs: hormonal and non-hormonal. There are a few different types of hormonal IUDs, like the Mirena®, Liletta® & Skyla®.
IUD stands for “Intrauterine Device”: which means it is inside the uterus. A doctor or nurse puts the IUD in the uterus, which is inside a woman’s body above the vagina.
- Soft, flexible t-shape
- Releases small amounts of hormones into the uterus
- Works up to 3 or 5 years
- If a woman wants to become pregnant, the device can be removed at any time by a doctor or nurse
- Totally free through A Step Ahead Foundation!
How does it work?
IUDs work by preventing the sperm from reaching the egg. The hormonal IUDs release a small amount of the hormone progestin. This can help prevent pregnancy in a few ways: the IUD thickens cervical mucus to make it difficult for sperm to move. In some women, the hormones may also prevent ovulation (which is when the egg leaves the ovaries).
How well does it work?
The IUD works really, really well. It is one of the very best forms of birth control. It's over 99% effective: if 100 women use the IUD, on average less than 1 will become pregnant within a year.
How do I use the IUD?
A doctor or nurse has to put the IUD in for you. Once they put in the IUD, you don't have to do anything! You are protected from pregnancy until you choose to have it removed, or up to 3, or 5 years depending on the type of IUD. Just don't forget to use a condom every time you have sex, because the IUD does not protect against STDs.
Does the IUD protect me from STDs?
No, absolutely not. So definitely use a condom every time you have sex so that you are protected from pregnancy AND sexually transmitted infections.
What if I want to get pregnant?
No problem! You can get the IUD taken out by a healthcare provider any time you want, and as soon as it is out you'll be able to become pregnant again. If you got the IUD through our services, we'll pay to have it taken out - so it's still completely free for you. Just call us at 901-320-STEP (7837) to set up an appointment.
- Over 99% effective
- Easy to use
- Lasts up to five years; can be taken out at any time
- For some women, lighter or no period
- Quick return to fertility - once you take it out, you can become pregnant
- Forgettable - no risk of forgetting to take a pill or put on a patch - you're covered!
- Does not protect against STDs or HIV
- Possible irregular periods, which may be heaviest at the beginning
- Some women experience cramping after insertion, while your body gets used to having the IUD in. This usually goes away after a short time
- Every women is different, talk to your doctor or nurse about potential side effects