Better Birth Control Choices: The IUD
Of the many different forms of birth control available, the intrauterine device (IUD) is one of the most effective, with a 99% success rate. An IUD can be in place for several years and be effective; but also can be easily removed without affecting your ability to get pregnant.
The main way that IUDs act as a contraceptive is in how they disrupt the movement of sperm so that it cannot reach the egg. This can be accomplished in two ways: with hormones or without.
This type of IUD utilizes levonorgestrel, which is a progestin that is similar to progesterone. The release of this progestin will work to prevent sperm from reaching the egg in several ways:
Of the five FDA-approved IUDs that are on the market for use in the U.S., four of them are hormonal. These IUDs have a polydimethylsiloxane sleeve containing levonorgestrel (the progestin hormone from above) on the stem. The amount of levonorgestrel released differs with each brand. Despite their differences in the amount of hormone in them, they all prevent pregnancy with the same efficacy.
Other side effects may include headaches, nausea, breast tenderness, depression, decreased libido, hair loss, and ovarian cysts
The specific benefits of choosing a hormonal IUD are:
The hormonal IUDs will not be a good birth control option for women who experience:
The ParaGard is the IUD that has no hormones. Instead of Progestin, the metal copper is how the ParaGard acts as a contraceptive.
Copper has an adverse and damaging effect on sperm. It even goes so far as to create an immune response that halts the development of eggs that could be otherwise fertilized.
The copper IUD offers the following advantages:
The disadvantages of choosing a copper IUD (or Paragard) are:
Overall, intrauterine devices can be an excellent contraception choice for many women. .
At Women’s Healthcare Associates we have a goal to provide you with one of the best experiences in women’s care in the greater Amarillo area. Our professional Staff offers personal care that focuses on the health and well-being of our patients as individuals. Our Services include comprehensive healthcare specialized just for women, prenatal and pregnancy care, digital mammography, bone density screening, ultrasound, contraception, menopause and more. For more information about how our comprehensive women’s healthcare can help you, please give us a call at (806) 355-6330.
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