Are you interested in a birth control method that lasts for years but can still be reversed at any time? Consider the flexibility and effectiveness of long-acting reversible contraceptives (LARCs) like the intrauterine device (IUD).
IUDs, both hormonal and non-hormonal, can prevent unwanted pregnancy for multiple years, leaving you free from concerns about managing your contraception.
An IUD is as effective for preventing pregnancy as a tubal ligation, with fewer than 1 in 100 women becoming pregnant while using an IUD. You can also have an IUD removed whenever you choose, keeping you in control of your body and fertility.
From her office in Houston, Texas, expert OB/GYN Alexandra Pellicena, MD, FACOG, provides contraceptive services, including IUD insertion, removal and maintenance, for new and existing patients. Here’s what Dr. Pellicena wants you to know about the benefits of an IUD.
A major benefit of an IUD is the long-term contraception it offers. The IUD is inserted into your uterus through your cervix, which requires only a brief in-office procedure. The T-shaped design of an IUD helps it settle into place and it can safely remain there for between 3-10 years.
That means you can stop thinking about contraceptive concerns on a daily or monthly basisas you have to do with birth control pills, patches, and rings. Many women prefer to have anIUD inserted and just forget about it until it’s time to have the device replaced or if they want to get pregnant.
Dr. Pellicena can remove your IUD at any point if you want to try for a pregnancy or switch to a different birth control method. The device has no lingering side effects or impacts on your fertility.
Hormonal and non-hormonal options
With an IUD, you also get to choose between hormonal and non-hormonal options. A non-hormonal copper IUD can effectively prevent pregnancy while not interfering at all with your natural hormonal cycle, due to copper’s natural spermicidal properties.
If, however, you prefer to use a hormonal birth control method — which can alter your ovulation — you still have options with an IUD. Hormonal IUDs use low doses of the hormone progestin, also found in most birth control pills. This thickens the mucus in your cervix to prevent sperm from passing through; in higher doses, it also affects your ovulation, meaning lighter or no periods.
To learn more about the freedom an IUD offers and to find out if you are a good candidate for this birth control method, get in touch with Dr. Pellicena today. You can book your initial consultation over the phone, or use the online tool to request your appointment.