Hello! Today I'd like to share my experience with two different types of IUDs (intrauterine devices).
My motivation for trying the IUD for the first time two years ago was the fact that I am personally not a fan of taking a medication every day, and I am definitely not a fan of hormonal birth control. I am sensitive to hormones and have found this out over a long time of trial and error from daily pills to rings that are left in all month and then removed and thrown away.
What has personally worked best for me has been condoms, however there have been occasions where I have had to go through the unpleasant experience of taking the morning after pill...more hormones.
So I decided to try out the IUD, which has been shown to be 99% effective at preventing pregnancy. I actually did try out the hormonal one first because, quite frankly, I was terrified of the stories I read online and heard from a friend about heavy, painful periods brought on by the copper, non-hormonal IUD. Plus, the staff at my gyno's office assured me that the hormones were so limited and concentrated that I shouldn't feel any effect. At any rate, I could always have it taken out (which I eventually did) so I gave it a whirl.
I was surprised to find that it actually bothered me that my periods were almost non-existent and I couldn't ever tell when they were coming. It made me feel depressed that I didn't understand what my body was doing, like I was disconnected from myself somehow. My boyfriend observed that while I was on it I was "flat" and not my usual self. I also did not have the same interest in sex that I had previously.
So that wasn't working for me and I had it taken out at my next annual. Since then I created habits of taking much better care of my body with regular exercise and healthier nutritional choices. Along with losing about 20 pounds of excess weight, I noticed that my periods were nearly painless and were only lasting about 3-4 days. My PMS symptoms had all but disappeared.
Feeling good about my overall health as well as reproductive health, I started thinking about trying the IUD again after a couple of scares and subsequent morning after pill experiences. I wondered if the copper IUD would really be such a traumatic experience if my cycle was as healthy as it is now. I decided to go for it, I made my appointment at Planned Parenthood and had my new copper IUD placed earlier this week. It was an uncomfortable procedure but I kept sending love and positive energy to the new inhabitant of my uterus and to my whole reproductive system and breathed through it.
I have to say, this experience has far exceeded my expectations. I did have some pretty intense cramping from the time of my appointment until the next morning, but I treated myself to a glass of wine, heat packs and turning in early and when I woke up I felt almost completely back to normal.
As it turns out, my period started a little early and, aside from about 3 pretty intense cramps, there was NO difference between my period this week and my regular periods. No excess bleeding, no intense pain. I'm so glad that I did this for myself, there will be no more taking the morning after pill for me and I will keep sending love to my body and to the little copper blessing that is helping me take good care of myself.
Has anyone else had a positive experience like this? Not-so-positive experience?
I invite any comments, stories or questions on the IUD or birth control in general. I think that this is an incredibly important topic for all people, and especially women since the responsibility generally falls on us. All are welcome to contribute and share! Good health to all :)