For reliable, reversible, and long-acting birth control, you may want to consider an IUD. New York City gynecologist Joan Berman, MD, provides IUD counseling and insertion at her practice in the Upper East Side of Manhattan. To learn more about IUDs, or get help with your IUD that’s fallen out, call or book an appointment online today.
An IUD, or intrauterine device, is a tiny, T-shaped birth control appliance that fits inside your uterus. IUDs are about the size of a quarter and must be inserted by Dr. Berman. You can’t insert or remove an IUD on your own, but once it’s in place, you don't have to worry about birth control.
There are two main categories of IUDs:
These IUDs are made of plastic and release hormones, similar to the birth control pill, to prevent pregnancy. Depending on the brand, they work for up to three to six years. There are four brands of hormonal IUDs available:
This type doesn’t release hormones, but uses copper to prevent pregnancy. PARAGARD® is the only copper IUD available, and it remains effective for up to 10 years. PARAGARD is also the most effective form of emergency contraception if you get it inserted within five days of unprotected sex.
IUDs provide consistent, foolproof protection against unwanted pregnancy. They’re over 99% effective and last for several years once inserted. If your IUD falls out of place, Dr. Berman can reposition it using ultrasound guidance.
IUDs are more reliable than other forms of birth control, such as the pill or vaginal ring, because there’s no risk of human error. Although these contraceptive methods are 99% effective with perfect use, nobody’s perfect, and the effectiveness drops to 91% with typical use.
First, Dr. Berman performs a physical exam and discusses your sexual and medical history. If she determines you’re a good candidate for an IUD, she discusses your best options.
Inserting the IUD takes less than five minutes and can be done at any point in your menstrual cycle. Dr. Berman gently inserts a speculum into your vagina, then uses a special instrument to position the IUD inside your uterus.
Some women experience cramping or mild pain during and after IUD insertion. Dr. Berman may use a local anesthetic or advise you to take pain medicine before the procedure to enhance your comfort.
To find out whether an IUD is right for you, call Dr. Berman or book an appointment online today.