by Alison Bucalo
Originally Published: 

WTF with the IUD? Madge the Vag sits down with gynecologist Dr. Angela Jones to learn about the powers of this T-shaped stick.

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The IUD or Intra Uterine Device is a T-shaped device that is inserted into the uterus and provides long-term birth control. IUDs are a beneficial form of birth control because they are 99% effective and last for years. Because the IUD is inserted into the uterus, you can set it and forget it. Who doesn’t love one less thing to worry about? There are different types of IUDs to consider. Hormonal IUDs like Mirena, Kyleena or Skyla may stop your period or cause irregular periods for the first 6 to 8 weeks. The copper or non-hormonal IUD does not contain hormones but can cause your period to become heavier. Dr. Angela suggests talking to your doctor about your options and risks associated with any of these IUDs.

Where Do They Go and How Do You Get Them In There?

Your gynecologist will insert the IUD through the cervix and inside the uterus, where it will remain. The IUD has a string on the end of it so that it can be removed by your gynecologist. The strings rest inside the cervical canal. Although unlikely, sometimes, your partner may feel it during intercourse, but the strings soften and become more malleable with time.

How Long Can The IUD Stay In There?

Although IUDs are long-term, they can vary in the amount of time they can stay in. Some IUDs will stay in for three years, while others for five, and some for 10 years. Regardless of the amount of time, it doesn’t mean you have to leave them in that long. If it’s time to get pregnant, have your doctor remove it. Yay, baby!

Does It Hurt?

Dr. Angela says, “It can be “a little crampy” when inserted. You may also feel some bloating. The IUD is highly effective, but remember, it only guards against pregnancy and not STDs. Talk to your doctor to find out if the IUD is right for you.

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