Many couples today are putting pregnancies on hold probably because of physical health or the economic hardships faced by most families living in the 21st century. These individuals rely on various birth control methods like condoms, contraceptive pills, patches, diaphragms, and many more. Among the contraceptive methods used, one of the most dangerous for a woman’s health is the use of the Intrauterine Device (IUD). An IUD is a flexible device that is made of plastic or copper that is inserted into the uterus through the vaginal canal. Most IUDs are made of a T-shaped plastic material that is wrapped with copper wire. This device is considered to be 95 to 98 percent effective in preventing unwanted pregnancies. Once an IUD is inserted, it can provide birth control for five to ten years. Present day IUDs are smaller, safer, and more effective. A far-cry from the ones that were used in the 1970’s. IUDs work by interfering with the movement of the sperm toward the egg. IUDs may prevent ovulation from occurring in some women.
Other benefits of using IUDs may include the following:
It can provide continuous pregnancy prevention for five years and can be removed anytime;
After removing the IUD, a woman’s ability to become pregnant may return to normal; and
It may reduce menstrual cramps and the amount of bleeding that accompanies a woman’s period.
However, this method of contraception has several side effects, namely:
Changes in menstrual flow and the appearance of spotting between first few periods
Abdominal or back pain
Development of ovarian cysts
Individuals who are interested in using IUDs should consult doctors about the effectiveness and safety of these methods. Doctors may perform a pelvic exam to make sure that one’s reproductive organs are normal and not infected. Certain conditions need to be treated before IUDs can be inserted. IUDs have attached strings that hang down through the cervix into the vagina. These strings are used to watch for signs and symptoms for possible complications which should be done at least once a week. In some cases, it can be cut shorter if the woman’s partner feels the string.
Despite the advantages of IUDs, most doctors do not encourage its use because of the side effects, complications, and health risks that they may bring. Many women experience side effects after the insertion of the IUD. It is also very painful to insert and may bring pain in the abdomen, back, or pelvic area. These factors may hamper one’s daily activities and ruin their lifestyle. In addition, it may cause scar tissue to form in the uterus and may cause complications in pregnancy. For that reason, women are best advised to seek the approval of doctors to verify side effects, health risks, and other conditions that contraceptives may bring.