What are your experiences with the new generation IUDs?

Posted by
Related: Did you know that there's a Cross Section Biomedical Illustration of Intrauterine Device in Position Peel and Stick Wall Decal? Ain't life grand!?
Related: Did you know that there’s a Cross Section Biomedical Illustration of Intrauterine Device in Position Peel and Stick Wall Decal? Ain’t life grand!?
Has anyone used a new-generation intrauterine device (IUD)? My doctor brought it up, and it sounds like a great form of birth control. They are often more effective than the pill, and WAY more effective than condoms. It used to be that only women who weren’t planning on more children were prescribed an IUD, but now more studies have indicated that the IUD can be removed at any time and women can get pregnant if they wish.

I like the idea of local medical interventions (a hormone-relasing IUD) when possible, rather than systemic (the pill). However, I frankly am still a little creeped out by something in my uterus. And nobody I know has ever used this form of birth control.

Clearly everyone should only take medical advice from their doctors, but I am asking for personal advice here. Have any Offbeat readers had favorable or negative experiences with one of the new generation IUDs? How did it fit into your lifestyle? -Inquiringmind

To tell you the truth, I’m curious about this as well!

I’m super-squicked out by the thought of something in my uterus, too. So that’s stopped me from actually going forward with an IUD. Any Homies out there have experience with ’em that can lay down some knowledge?

REMINDER: We want to stay away from any kind of medical advice in the comments, but we do encourage you to share your experiences and link to additional resources.

Comments on What are your experiences with the new generation IUDs?

  1. I’ve had the Paragard for a year and a half now and I LOVE it. For me insertion wasn’t really too painful, even though I’ve never had a baby and I didn’t even get it done during my period like they recommended because mine’s not completely regular and their appointments were booked over a month in advance so I guessed wrong when making the appointment. There was an assistant there to hold my hand if I needed to squeeze something, but it really wasn’t bad at all; far less painful than getting a tattoo, and the pain I did have was quite brief. I did have some cramping the first week or so, and it restarted my period, which had been done for a few days, and the first few months my period was a bit heavier than normal, but it slowly went back down to what it was before.

    Really the only negative for me was that I can’t use my menstrual cup anymore (my cervix sits fairly low and I often couldn’t break the suction before pulling it partway out plus it would be hard to avoid the strings). Positives are that I only have to think about it for about 10 seconds a month as I check the strings for the next 10 years, long-term the price isn’t too bad, I don’t have to have any extra hormones which I don’t do well with, and I knew going in that if it didn’t work out most side effects would be nearly immediately reversible by simply having it removed.

  2. I had Mirena after our first baby and I didn’t have a good experience with it at all–BUT I later learned that my body really just does not jive with me taking hormones, so it’s just not for ME.

    It is, however, ah-MAY-zing for being reliable, fix-it-and-forget-it birth control.

    I was told to take something for pain before the appointment but I forgot and it was like labor pain after less than 10 minutes. I had to stop and curl up on a bench for almost an hour before I could move to go home. And that was only because I was able to get some Tylenol at the pharmacy in the building.

  3. I’ll pile on here. I’ve never had kids but want to someday. Tried the shots and just had constant periods. Tried the seasonal that suppresses your period and still had constant period. After being on the pill for years and years it took my body a YEAR to adjust to being off of it so I was kind of freaked about going back on a hormonal birth control since I’m older (36) and when babymaking time comes I don’t like the idea of a year before I stop seeing signs that all the crap is out of my system. So I opted for the Paraguard (copper, non hormonal) IUD about 6 months ago. Insertion was uncomfortable and I could feel the darn thing in my uterus for a couple months, it just felt… pokey? My periods for the first couple months were heavy and crampy. I’ve never been real crampy so I don’t know how it compares but there was one day a month for the first three that I’d just stay home from work, take a vicodin, and chill with the heating pad. It got better and now I’d say my periods are pretty normal and I don’t feel it anymore (and I’ve checked it’s still there). The man hasn’t said he can feel it or anything. I’ve been happy with the whole experience. My doc did not use any cervical relaxants. The clamp they used to steady my cervix was the most painful part really. Reminded me of getting my navel pierced.

  4. Let’s see. The second time I got one put in, I was at a university OB/GYN clinic, and talked to one of their faculty. He (I know) says that 1/10 women it doesn’t work with their uterus at all, 1/10 women have bad side effects and hate it and want it OUT NOW, and the other 8 really love it. Which I think is probably about accurate.

    When my then-fiancé and I sat down to discuss BC options, this was the one we could both live with: he was raised conservative Catholic and has a deep fear and hatred of hormonal birth control, and I was not willing to live with the high pregnancy rates for barrier methods besides condoms (or the mood-killing feeling of having to shove a diaphragm or cervical cap in in the middle of sex). More localized hormonal BC, at a much lower level, plus the uterine changes (more cervical mucus, less hospitable environment for sperm, less ability for a fertilized egg to implant) worked out to a compromise we could live with.

    I am on the Mirena, because my psych meds put me at a greater risk for random bruising and bleeding, and the Paragard can cause heavier bleeding, so that was a no-no.

    I had my first one inserted after I got engaged, and my then-fiancé (now spouse!) came with me. I don’t think I would ever have one inserted again without bringing a loved one whose hand I can squeeze the hell out of to make it hurt less during the insertion. The first insertion was like the mother of all pap smears–super extra pressure on the cervix, super extra dilation of the vagina, a brief period of pain pain pain and then fine.

    I had a lot of spotting for two months and then a much lighter period. I occasionally got weird uterine cramps that weren’t like period cramps (and that ibuprofen, which is the only thing that works on my period cramps, couldn’t touch) for the first several months, but overall it was worth it to never have to think about my birth control. The OB/GYN left the strings about a finger-width long out of my cervix. Since the cervix moves up and the vagina lengthens during sex, even with my second IUD, where the strings feel like the ends of fishing line sticking out of my cervix, my spouse and I have had no problem with the strings poking him in a painful way during penis-in-vagina sex. (With the first one with the longer strings, he occasionally felt the strings along the wall of my vagina, but there’s so much give in the vaginal tissue that it was never, ever painful or uncomfortable for him.)

    After a year and eight months, my IUD expelled itself. I promise, you will notice if this happens (unless you flush the toilet without looking)–a T-shaped thing the size of a half-dollar will be sitting in your toilet, panties, or menstrual cup.

    With my first IUD, I did have a recurring yeast infection, but it was also my first year of having sex. So, although the nurse midwife I talked to when I was shopping around for a new OB/GYN thought this was IUD related, I’m not sure, and the doctors at Local University Hospital disagreed (although the LUH doctors did think the expulsion was related to using a menstrual cup, which the nurse midwife emphatically did not–everyone has their biases).

    After my IUD expelled itself, I had vaginal bleeding for…a month and a half. I had scheduled a D&C, in fact, and then the bleeding stopped. So if it self-expels (more common in women who haven’t had kids, and waaaaaay more common in the first month, mine was a fluke), be prepared to wait for your uterus to take a while self-cleaning before things return to normal, or to need the doctor to flush things out for you.

    We determined that the expulsion really was a fluke and I was at no higher risk of having it expel if I got another one, so I got another one! (Both times covered by insurance–they are starting to be covered more often because in the long run the company has to pay less than for oral BC). This time, they did a “poke” test to find the dimensions of my uterus instead of an ultrasound, so it hurt a lot more. On the other hand, the Local University Hospital staff was very helpful, happy to give me a double-dose of advil, and happy to let me lie in the room after the procedure until I felt like walking again.

    I have had no problems in the six months since then, have not had any recurrence of the random uterine cramps or the recurring yeast infection (which I had finally gotten aggressive on before my first IUD self-expelled), and my period has stopped altogether, although I may have some mild cramps, veeeeery mild spotting, or pre-menstrual depression at the usual time.

    I loooooooooove my IUD. Love that the hormones are more localized, love that I don’t have to think about it, love that it works out to be damn cheap over a five year period (even though if there’s no insurance it’s a lot up front), love that it’s easily reversible. I’m honestly not sure that I’d ever want any other kind of birth control.

  5. I’ve had the Paraguard for almost 7 years now, and I’ve had a fantastic time with it!

    Insertion only hurt a tiny bit, and made me feel sort of crampy for the rest of that day. The doctor wasn’t sure my insurance would cover it (in which case it would be $400, back then anyway) but they did, so it was a $20 copay for 10 years of birth control! Can’t beat that.

    For the first month or two I was still withdrawing from my previous hormonal birth control which was a huge mess, with 6 weeks straight of bleeding, but I don’t *think* any of that was related to the IUD.

    It did take me from zero cramps, ever, to mild/moderate cramps every month for maybe 2-3 days of my period. That’s tolerable, for me. I can imagine if you already had cramps, and this made them worse, it might be a different story. My period isn’t longer or heavier, but it was really freaking long to begin with.

    The lack of hormones makes me more optimistic for getting pregnant when (if?) I decide to remove it… but I’d consider Mirena next time, because having shorter/no periods would be excellent. 6 day long periods every 25 days is rough, and my hopes that it would improve with age don’t seem to be working out for me.

  6. I started birth control at a young age to help my really rough periods regulate- got pregnant on the depo shot, then after the birth of my son, I “qualified” for Mirena. It worked astoundingly well for me, but my husband needs the strings to be cut rather short to make it comfy for him. Got it out to “not start trying, just stop trying not to” have a baby and got pregnant eight months later. After that pregnancy, I got on Nexplanon, which has been miserable for me- decreased libido, I’ve been spotting for eleven months, and it’s played hell with my moods. Going back to Mirena at the end of this month.

    Hormonal birth control can be hit or miss depending on you. Just remember, you can always take it out if you’re in the group with unpleasant side effects.

    • great point! “Just remember, you can always take it out if you’re in the group with unpleasant side effects.” my insurance covered mine and my doc pointed out that if there were side effects we could just remove it and they wouldn’t penalize me or anything 🙂

  7. I had the Paraguard IUD for 5 years pre-babies, and at that time, it hurt to get inserted. However, my OB-GYN advised me well to take 800mg Motrin/Advil before the appointment, so that helped. Easy to take out, and I got pregnant no problems the very next month. Post-Baby#1 I got the Paraguard again and it was great; turns out it hurts a hell of a lot less once you know the pain of labor and delivery. 🙂 Got Paraguard again post-Baby#2 and still no complaints. It works great for me, and I love that it’s a hormone-free option with no side-effects and nothing to deal with. I’ve always had heavy and crampy periods, and haven’t noticed a difference on or off the Paraguard. The string is short (it’s almost more like a plastic thread) and doesn’t get in the way. You do have to make sure your midwife or OB cuts the string short enough so it doesn’t poke you in the cervix (that happened to me and I just went back in and they snipped the string a little shorter once it had “settled” post-insertion).

    The IUD is very freeing. My insurance covered it, it’s worry-free, it’s 99.7% effective, and hormone-free. But it’s definitely not for everyone… although no form of BC is, so it’s worth trying it out since it’s so reversible to see if it’s right for you.

    Also, for what it’s worth, I have heard from a doctor friend that MDs push the Mirena because the pharma industry makes the hormones used in it, and guess who gets kick-backs for selling lots of Mirenas?

  8. I tried the ParaGard and also Mirena. I was hoping for a form of birth control that wouldn’t trigger migraines. I had TERRIBLE experiences with both IUDs. Pain putting them in (I’ve never had a baby.) The whole time I had the IUDs, I had HORRIBLE, PAINFUL CYSTS that really controlled my life. I was so glad to have it removed. FYI, I had some serious withdrawal symptoms when I had the Mirena out – WILD mood swings and scary heavy bleeding. Now on NuvaRing and love love love it!

  9. Hello, i had my copper IUD put in last year.
    Firstly i chose this form as i just couldn’t be on the pill, i’m very sensitive to chemicals and i was miserable for years before my doc realise it was the pill making me ill.
    i was a little weirded about having a metal coil just sitting there but the pros far outweighed any cons and was much safer than condoms for not getting preggers. i’ve had no problems at all, seriously, nothing.
    HOWEVER, it was very uncomfortable to have put in, though i know this changes from person to person, but overall a short price to pay. I also had a great Dr put it in, she’d been doing it for 20 years and i also got to have my partner in the room to hold my hand. but after a couple days i was back to normal and i haven’t had to think about it since other then leaving myself a reminder to have it replaced in 5 years lol
    I’d go for it, i recommend it to everyone i know and personally i think it should be a first choice before the pill.

  10. I’m on my 2nd copper IUD. I got the first one in 2000. When the 10 year mark rolled around (which was when I was told it needed to be changed) I went in, only to be told that they now last 13 years. DON’T always believe that. I didn’t change it then, but waited. 2 years later I was pregnant with an IUD still in place. Apparently the copper can break down and not give you enough protection. I’m getting my new one replaced earlier. I don’t want that happening again.

  11. It is AMAZING. I have a non-hormonal (copper) IUD and it is amazing…literally has changed my life. Found insertion almost painless…little bit of relatively minor period cramps and then done…took about 45 seconds. Recovery was okay, little tender for a couple of days but no worries.

    Many people have longer and more painful periods after a copper IUD, but I’ve experienced none of that. Period has got a little heavier but I had a very light one to begin with so I’ve barely noticed that.

    Never regretted it, one of the best decisions I’ve made.

    Oh, I’m 27 and have no kids and never been pregnant. The boyf has never been able to feel it either…I know some people have that issue with their partner being able to feel the strings.

    • Also, just in case we have some UK readers here….IUDs are covered by the NHS. So if you happen to be UK-based at all and are thinking about it, you can do it on the NHS for free, this also includes a follow up to check it’s in place a month later as well as any aftercare should you need anything at all. I know there aren’t many Brits here, but just in case!

      • All contraception is free on the NHS! It’s very civilized! You can even get free condoms & lube at the sexual health clinic, and checkups for problems etc are also free (I had an ultrasound scan ~2.5 years after getting an IUD because it was really painful). Also, emergency contraception is free and you can get it anonymously, just have to swallow the pill in front of the nurse. I <3 the NHS. (American, been here almost 10 years, will get permanent residence in a few years' time)

  12. well I had one for about a year, worked fine, was very happy with it because normally I am very forgetful about taking pills, so this was perfect for me, until I got pregnant!
    It was a scary experience because obviously we had to take it out before the baby got too big and it could cause perforation. So had to risk loosing the baby at 4 weeks by taking it out, or risk leaving it in and maybe loosing the baby further down the pregnancy.
    We took it out asap, stayed in bed for a couple of weeks and thank God now my son is 3 and healthy. Scary memory.

  13. Wow. Lots of comments — way too many to read. I can’t speak from experience other than also being weirded out by the idea of something like that in my uterus. Turns out I was probably right to be weirded out by it since I turned out to have a uterine anomaly that means putting in an IUD could have had some bad consequences. (Like uterine puncture! Yikes!)

    That being said, I’m also done with hormonal birth control as well. (My last experience coming off of it has turned me off of it forever — my cycles were screwed up for well over a year.) So, when I finally succeed in having a child, we’ll probably be using charting and condoms to avoid pregnancy.

  14. One thing I’d like to emphasize it that MANY INSURANCE PLANS COVER IUD’S 100% under the preventative care portion of ObamaCare.
    I have never given birth and have no desire to. After 10+ years on hormonal birth control I’m ready for something longer lasting and my gyn has recommend Skyla. It’s newly FDA-Approved so no long term consumer reactions yet (only study info is available) but it has fewer hormones than Mirena, and since it’s smaller than other IUD’s it’s approved for women who have never given birth. It’s not widely available yet, but definitely something to look into.
    I haven’t made a decision yet, largely because I had issues with an ovarian cyst in the past and IUD’s can cause/enhance ovarian cysts. I return to the gyn soon to get all test results back, and then we’ll see.

  15. I just skimmed the replies, but I do know that what I have to say about Mirena is generally a minority.
    I hated Mirena. Loathed it. Every day I had it in was unpleasant for me. I could feel the Mirena inside me constantly, just enough to bother me. Didn’t exactly hurt for day-to-day, but was a minor discomfort I could never really get used to. Sex, on the other hand, sometimes just getting turned on hurt, and when he hit my cervix I was a blubbering mess. The worst for me is that it totally destroyed my sex drive. We’re talking, I went from wanting it 3+ times a day to not wanting it at all, ever, for almost 2 years. I believe that it reduced my milk production while I was breastfeeding, and I hit a wall with my weight loss as soon as it went in. If I didn’t pay attention to what I was eating, I could gain 10 lbs over the course of a weekend. The final straw for me was that I started having side pains and found out I was developing cysts on my ovaries. It’s also currently under some lawsuits for being linked to infertility. Both the friends I know who also had it have had miscarriages since having it out. One of those only had it in for 6 months and was sick every single day, but they make you keep it in that long unless it’s a dire emergency. The day I got the thing out of my body was the happiest of my life. Of course, now I’m TTC, so I’m freaked out too.

  16. I got a Paraguard copper (non-hormonal) IUD back in 2010 and I can safely say that it has been the most AMAZING decision I have ever made in regards to my birth control. Insertion was strange but not painful (though I had a very crampy-feeling belly for the rest of the day and the next day, but that’s it). I had 1 or 2 (can’t remember) follow up appointments and check my strings every few months (it’s recommended every month but it’s been almost 3 years now…pretty sure it’s not going anywhere) and other than that it’s been 100% smooth sailing. The fact that no hormones are involved AND it lasts 10-12 YEARS (?!?!?!) is amazing for me. Literally I was given this goofy little card that says “Schedule a replacement appointment for your IUD on: August 10th, 2022.” What?! My periods are natural (sometimes good and bad) and when I decide to take it out for baby makin’ I can literally get pregnant the same day since there’s no hormones involved.

    My only knowledge of Mirena or similar (hormone IUDs) is that my ex-roommate was the chillest girl ever and then she got a Mirena and simultaneously turned into a complete basket case/biotch. Not saying there’s a connection but… very coincidental.

    I’ve convinced a few other friends to get Paraguard and hear back from them that it’s been just as great as my experience! I’m never, ever turning back. In the past I’ve used the patch, Nuva Ring, various pills, and plain ol’ condoms.

    I can’t gush enough about Paraguard. I don’t even take otc pain pills or supplements so being able to control my uterus in a hormone-free way is just a dream come true.

    Edit: I’m 22, no kiddos yet.

  17. I get migraines with aura, which means that I can’t use estrogen-based BC due to an increased risk of stroke. So I had the Mirena put in three years ago, and overall I’ve been very happy with it. I’ll agreed with the other commenters that the insertion was rather painful, and I had fairly brutal cramps for the rest of the day; a friend who had her Mirena inserted a few months post-partum said it wasn’t as bad for her.

    My period hasn’t disappeared, although it’s very, very light now, like pantyliners-only light. I do get worse cramps than I did before I had it put in, although my cramps seem to periodically get stronger or milder for a couple of years at a time, so it may be a coincidence. Every so often, the obsessively-worried side of my brain thinks it can feel it poking me, but I’m assured by a recent, unrelated abdominal MRI that everything’s still in place and working great.

    All in all, definitely worth a bit of hassle to avoid having to use other BC!

  18. absolutely awful with the paragard it basically poisoned my body i got copper toxity even tho it is “super rare” it happen to me i was covered in bruises for no reason couldn’t think or see clearly then it got to the point where i was having panic attacks my skin severely dried out i thought i was losing it and it actually came out I think my body was fighting it off but it was a horrible expeirience i got it in 6wk pp and the symptoms and everything peaked 5months later til the day that if fell out and i instantly felt better then the week after it felt like i was coming off of drugs then brusiing stopped vision got better and i felt like a normal human being again. I don’t mean to scare people away but the information needs to be put out there some people have a natural higher copper level like me i’m bipolar and this just sent my body out of wack

  19. I had the Paraguard until a few months ago, and I had to have it removed because it was triggering genital herpes outbreaks. Before the IUD I had only had a handful of outbreaks over 10 years, but over the year I had the IUD I had monthly, very severe outbreaks. Genital herpes is an embarrassing topic for many sufferers, but I felt it was important to mention in this case, because the IUD was definitely a trigger and lead to a very painful year for me. I’d definitely warn against IUDs for other HSV positive women.

  20. I’ve had a Paragard for almost two years exactly now. I chose the copper, hormone-free one because my son took 18 months to conceive, so I’d had a chance to get to know my body when it was completely free of artificial hormones, and really liked it.

    My experience with insertion is rather different from many of the other commenters, I gave birth with a non-medicated waterbirth and insertion of that sucker STILL hurt like hell. But after reading some of the comments on here, I suspect that my experience with the pain may have been because my cervix had barely finished closing after the birth of my son. I had to slightly rush the insertion in order to get it so it was covered by our soon-to-be-lost-due-to-job-loss health insurance, so it ended up being inserted about 5 weeks after I gave birth. The up-side of that is that we had just recently met our deductible, so there was hardly any out-of-pocket cost, if any.

    If this question had been posed to me a few months ago, I would have had a different opinion on its trustworthiness, however in Fall of last year I had a pregnancy scare (period was over a week late, and when it finally came it was MUCH heavier and *ahem* had a different texture to the flow than it normally does) so now my husband and I don’t trust it nearly as much. I still like it, and won’t be getting it taken out (partly because of an aversion to hormones, but also because w/out medical insurance GETTING another form of birth control would be an additional hassle I don’t want to deal with), but we’re more careful now about where I am in my cycle before we have sexytime. Basically, my vagina has “black-out dates” these days, in the middle of my cycle when I’m showing signs of increased fertility.

    Another thing of note is that when mine was inserted, the midwife “left the strings a little long” with the intention that they’d soften up and eventually curl around my cervix. Yeah, that didn’t happen, so sometimes they poke me and/or hubs. Having practiced FAM during my journey to motherhood I’m not bothered by needing to reach in and adjust them, but I can see how that could be a MAJOR issue for some ladies. When the strings poke hubby there’s usually a few minutes during sex that he has to back off and hug me (getting jabbed on the end of your junk by little spikey things kills the mood a little, whodathunkit!?) but we’re usually able to finish up w/ little issue after I get things back where they should be.

  21. I’ve had the copper IUD for about 3 years now and i love it. I don’t handle hormones well so the Mirena was not an option for me. Plus, the copper IUD that i have lasts for 10 years!! I have one 6 year old and don’t want any more children so a long term effective birth control option was the best for me. My GYN told me to come in while i was on my period for easier insertion. The cervix is a little more open during the period, and while it was a bit squicky, it did help – i think so anyway. The worst part for me was the opening of the cervix. The little tool thing that she used to open it and then keep it open – that put two little holes in the cervix that she ended up cauterizing – anyway that was the painful bit. I didn’t take anything for the pain and during the procedure i winced quite a lot but it wasn’t terrible. Once it was in she trimmed the strings to the desired length and then i was good to go. The strings are more of a wire, like fishing line almost, not just straight pokey metal.
    It has made me periods heavier, but not terrible. I have about 3 days of heavy bleeding and then it’s normal. I didn’t have cramps before the IUD, but i do now. Again, it’s not a big deal, the first day of my period i get crampy, but a midol or something similar takes care of it no problem. My husband never feels the strings during sex and he’s never been poked. I check to make sure they are still there about twice a month, right after my period and then some random time in between.

    I did have one issue, one month i didn’t feel the strings, had to go in have an ultrasound done to see if it was still in place. It was, just moved up a little bit further in my uterus. I was told it would come back down once my uterus quit being elongated during that time of the month, it did and i haven’t had any issues since. I go in once a year to have it checked during my yearly exam, pretty much the Dr. checks on the strings, asks if i have any issues. Easy.

    I absolutely love the IUD. It is such great peace of mind. The side effects have been negligible, it has freed me from so much worry and best of all NO HORMONES! Also, 10 years of birth control with a one time insertion! Awesome. When my time is up on this one, i am for sure getting another. I have recommended it to all my friends and family.

  22. I loved having the Mirena IUD. I got it placed back in college and only got it out in order to get pregnant (which happened within two months, so it didn’t affect my fertility at all). The IUD only gave me light bleeding and eventually just spotting instead of regular periods. The spotting was a bit hard to predict at first (since I was used to the very regular schedule I was on while taking birth control pills), but eventually I learned to read my body and recognize the signs – overall, the unpredictability was way worth it to have such light bleeding. It was never so heavy or unpredictable to ruin any clothes or lead to any public embarrassing moments, so that was a big relief!

    Even though I hadn’t had any kids yet when I got the IUD placed (and I had a tilted uterus), the doc was able to get it in fine the first time. It was painful for a couple seconds when the IUD was inserted but it wasn’t bad at all after that. I used it as an excuse to be lazy the rest of the day but I totally could have gone to class/work/whatever. My pre-Obamacare insurance covered it and all I had to pay was the $20 copay for the doc visit.

    I didn’t have any negative side effects like mood swings, acne, or weight gain. It’s SO nice not to have to worry about a pill every day – there’s no way to mess it up (and nothing to pack while traveling)! I also liked that the Mirena put the hormones right where they needed to be instead of having to take an oral pill that put hormones through my whole body. I’m definitely planning on getting a Mirena again after this pregnancy!

  23. I had a mirena for a few years, and aside from some persistent spotting the first year, was pleased with it. I am guilty of never checking for the strings after a few failed attempts, and basically forgetting about it. Then I went to have it removed, long story short, after some very aggressive searching for it, an ultrasound (don’t bother, it’s made of plastic), and an x ray, it was determined that my mirena fell out. This was a relief after thinking for 2 days that it was just lost in my pelvic cavity. go figure. It’s really too bad I will never be confident using one again, because until then I would have.

  24. I’m surprised to hear all of the negative side effects some have experienced with IUDs! I’m a huge proponent. I’m on my second Mirena and could not be happier.

    No period! No spotting! For years!
    Insurance covered it fully. That’s 7 years of “free” birth control.
    Super high effectiveness rate, I am never concerned about pregnancy.
    Supposedly no waiting period between removal and pregnancy (yet to be tried)

    It’s hurts going in and out. I get cramps for up to 3 days after.
    My skin is worse than on the Pill.

  25. So a few things to give some context to my story. I elected to try Mirena as an approach to dealing with my Endometriosis. I’ve never had any children and I was in my mid 20’s. The thought was to bring the Endometriosis under control while giving me low amounts of progestrin. The OBGYN prescribed me a Valium to take prior to the insertion since I was a bit anxious about the whole thing. Well what was not fully explained was the level of pain that was there during the placement. Immense. The only thing I could say is that its the closest to a full-blown contraction I’ve ever experienced. Saw stars, was sweating, the whole works. Went about my business for a few months and my periods/cramps did get lighter but never fully stopped.

    A few months later my fiance and I were travelling abroad and I felt a random ultra sharp pain on my left side — followed by a very heavy and sudden period. This pattern repeated and I had several ultrasounds which informed me that 1) the IUD was placed correctly and didn’t puncture anything and 2) nothing else. Ultimately I had the device removed (which wasn’t nearly as painful as the insertion) and I’ve been symptom free ever since. The only thing the doctor suggested was that there’s an increase in ovarian cysts in some patients. That’s the closest explanation I ever received.

    P.s. If anyone is curious, I’m now on a low-dosage birth control pill that I take continuously, opting not to go for the Lupron shot because I felt it wasn’t for me. No problems at all 🙂

Read more comments

Join the Conversation