Things to consider before IUD

First off, I want to say this is my own experience and anyone considering contraception or birth control should go see their ob/gyn for more information.

Mentally prepare yourself. Intrauterine device is a great method of birth control.  It is one of the most effective forms of birth control – over 99% effective. Currently approximately 2 million women use it in the United States.  As for me the advantages that were appealing included the length of time for the IUD – three years for the Skyla, 5 years for the Mirena and 10 years for the Paragard – the efficacy of 99%, complete coverage by my insurance, and not having to take birth control pills everyday.

I picked Mirena because I also wanted a reduction in heavy periods, which had plagued me since my adolescence.  IUD are long acting reversible contraceptives so if you plan to try to get pregnant you can remove it at any time even before the planned 3, 5 or 10 year period especially if you are unsure if you want more kids.  After the removal you can become pregnant.

So when the day comes for the IUD placement – plan first.  Come during your period, usually at the tail end when the bleeding is less heavy.  Your cervical os, or opening of the uterus, is slightly open making it easier for insertion.  Take something for possible cramping if you think you need it.  When I planned mine I was at the end of my menses, took ibuprofen and mentally and physically prepared myself.

After it was placed I definitely had cramping for 1 week and bleeding/spotting for a good three weeks. But at least I don’t have to worry about pregnancy. Well until I decide I may want another beautiful child.  When I see my little ones I just can’t help but want more sometimes.  Aren’t they such cutie pies?



Contraception after pregnancy

First off, I want to say this is my own experience and anyone considering contraception or birth control should go see their ob/gyn for more information.

I am now 6 months postpartum.  I’ve endured six loving months of breastfeeding so far and still going strong despite going back to work and my supply decreasing.  I have supplemented with some formula here and there.  Dexter has also started eating as pictured here:

20150114_102547That being said as a breastfeeding mom there are fewer options for birth control.  Only progesterone birth control are recommended since estrogen may lower your breast milk supply if it is not established.  For any moms out there producing breast milk, we all know it is liquid gold or any cute metaphors you might have for this magical substance that grow our little babies.

So what are the options?
1. Abstinence (but that’s no fun)
2. Condoms (High failure rate)
3. Mini progesterone birth control pill (Everyday, same time)
4. Depo Provera injection (3 months but has side effects)
5. Progesterone IUD (Long acting, reversible birth control and highly effective)
6. Copper IUD (Effective but may have heavier menses)
7. Implant (Small rod in arm)

So after at my 6 week post partum visit I opted for Depo provera injection.  Why? Because it was readily available and easy for me at the time.  I do, however, regret getting it.  I had more side effects than I cared for and ended up having to take estrogen pills for a short time due to the hypoestrogenic effects on my body.  Not everyone has the same problems but both pregnancies I had the same side effects.

After the three month period, I switched to Mirena, a progesterone IUD that is effective for 5 years.  I will say it was a great decision and I am very happy about it now.  The first week was a bit painful since I had cramps like a period and had vaginal spotting here and there for 2 weeks.  I hope that my periods will be lighter as it is common with among most Mirena users.  It’s been almost 4 weeks so we shall see how this goes.  I am happy I don’t have to take a pill everyday and that my side effects are minimal.  Definitely not looking to get pregnant anytime again soon.