Alright ladies and ladies, I have some news for you! I decided to get the copper IUD as my form of birth control a couple months ago. I have gathered my thoughts and am here to share my insertion process an the copper IUD pros and cons.
Disclaimer: This is not medical advice and should not be taken as such. I am not a doctor and do not claim to be as these are solely based on my experiences. Please consult your family doctor before considering any recommendations listed in this post. Thanks!
What is the copper IUD and why did I chose it?
The Copper IUD is the only non hormonal on the market. If you have no idea what an IUD is, its a little T-shaped device that your health care practitioner. I will give you the details on the insertion process later in this post because I know thats everyones itching question!
The reason I chose the copper IUD come down to these main points:
- It is non hormonal
- There is little to no maintenance
- It is 99% effective at preventing pregnancy
- The IUD lasts 5-7 years depending on the brand
- When the copper IUD is removed, fertility resumes quickly
When it comes to the Copper IUD pros and cons, all of the reasons listed above are pros for me! There are other IUD’s on the market which are hormonal such as the mirena and the kyleena. These IUDs do excret a small dose of progestin into the uterus to thicken cervical mucus and thin the lining. This makes it hard for sperm to travel through to an egg and for an egg to implant. The biggest reason I chose the copper IUD is the fact that it is non hormonal.
Con: Copper IUD insertion process
OK SO drumroll please! The insertion was not as bad as other articles say it is. It was uncomfortable for sure and does depend on the experience of your doctor. For me, I went to an amazing clinic in the Vancouver area called Willow clinic. All of the doctors were kind and gentle, the insertion was over in 5 minutes.
Firstly, The doctor inserted a tool to open up my VJ so my cervic was visable and easy to work with. Second she did an ultrasound to see how big and the position of my uterus. Then came the freezing, she froze my cervix like when you get a cavity which sounds painful BUT was not that bad. Plus, made for a much easier insertion on the actual IUD. That brings my to the last step, she inserted the IUD I felt a moderate cramp for about 2-3 seconds and it was over.
Make sure you have an experienced doctor and you will be just fine!
Into the copper IUD pros and cons
The Pros I experienced with the copper IUD during my 2 months of having it are limited. Yes, I love the fact that it is non hormonal but it does cause hormonal disruption. I also love to was able to get down and dirty with my bf at any time without having to worry about condoms or getting pregnant.
As for the side effects: most did subside after the 2nd month of having it. The first month was pretty terrible if im being honest and very frustrating. I went from having painless periods to being bed ridden for a day or 2 because the cramping was bad. However, I did expect that as my doctor was very transparent that may happen.
Where do I begin, lets start with right after I got my Copper IUD inserted. I was on my period when I got the IUD inserted so my first period with the IUD was not all that bad. However, a few days following insertion I did feel moderate cramps pretty consistently. After my period had ended the camping stopped as well and I was able to live my day to day without any noticable side effects.
Then came period #2. Cramping was bad, oddly my butt was cramping as well which was new for me (if you experiences this you know what im talking about). in PMS week bloating was noticable, my energy levels dropped, and my emotions were a bit all over the place. Strange considering the copper IUD is non hormonal. Or maybe not.
Copper IUD increases estrogen levels
What I did not know about the Copper IUD is that the copper levels in my body would increase. Copper is a heavy metal and required by the body in small portions. Estrogen is one of the 2 primary female hormones and is intricately related to copper. When copper levels increase so does estrogen creating estrogen dominante symptoms. Hence the mood swings, heavy periods, and cramping – all symptoms of estrogen dominance.
Now, I have only had the IUD for a few months and the level of copper would not be enough to be considered abnormal. However, studies have shown that increases in copper levels decrease levels of zinc,magnesium, and B6 in the body. Zinc, in particular, is found to decrease in the luteal phase when progeterone is high and also the time PMS takes place. This makes sense that the copper IUD would increase the sevarity of PMS symptoms.
Will it stay or will it go?
Will it stay. A question Im still debating myself but by the side effects I’ve been facing I think Im going to keep it for a few more months and see if the side effects will ware off any more. Primarily the cramps, bloating, fatigue, and mood swings are the most pressing issues. However, I am still sexually active and the birth control portion of the IUD still outweighs the side effects I must endure.
Thinking about getting an IUD too? check out my post all about IUDs! The different kinds and which one would best fit your lifestyle.
In summary, the copper IUD is the best form of birth control for me right now. I remain ovulating and it is very important to me to maintain fertility. I had a missing period due to Hypothalamic amenorrhea for 4 years which has negatively effected my fertility. One of the many long term side effects of not taking care of your reproductive health – Just FYI
As birth control pills halt ovulation, that was not an option for me. The form of birth control you choose for yourself will be subjective to you, your history, and what is most important to you. For now, that is the copper IUD for me so I will endure the side effects and let you know if they ever go away!
as always, if you have questions or want to share your story, please do so in the comment section. I would love to hear your thoughts <3
Update: I did remove the Copper IUD after my relationship ended as I did not find it bearable for me to keep when I was not sexually active. You can read more on why I removed it here
until next time xx