The Intrauterine Device (IUD) or the non-hormonal coil is a small device shaped like the capital letter T, which sits in the womb. It is a very effective method of birth control and is quite popular among women aged 20 -34 years. The IUD is a very effective way of preventing conception, and it can be easily removed whenever you decidethat you want to become pregnant again. You can book an appointment for a coil fitting London at any reputed sexual clinic, or you can contact us here in London at the Gynaecology Clinic if you want a private coil fitting near me.
How is IUD fitted?
Before you can have an IUD coil fitted inside you, you may have to be tested for infections such as STI so that they will be treated before the coil is inserted. Know that the coil can be inserted at any time during your monthly menstrual cycle, including when you are on your period. The only exception will be if you are pregnant.
Having a coil fitted can be painful and uncomfortable; however, the pain should not last long as it has been described as being quite similar to period pains. The pain is more likely to be reduced if you have had a vaginal delivery, as your cervix will have already been stretched before.
You will be asked to lie down on your back with your knees bent, and a speculum will be used to keep your vagina open. A local anaesthetic gel will beapplied to the cervix, which will feel cold. The clinician will then proceed to use forceps to hold the cervix steady so that the size and position of the womb will be determined with a sterile probe.
The coil or IUD device comes with its arms folded down as it is packed inside a narrow tube. The tube is then inserted into the vagina, through the cervix and into the uterus by the clinician. The plastic tube is then pulled out, leaving the coil in place and allowing its arms to fold open. Before the speculum is removed, the strings of the coil are cut, leaving about 1 – 2 cm hanging down at the top of the vagina so that you can feel it to make sure it is still in place.
The entire process takes about 5 minutes, and although some people normally feel cramping pain afterwards, you will be recommended to take some pain killers just before the appointment.
How does the IUD work?
When the IUD has been inserted in place, you do not have to worry about contraception for 5 – 10 years. It does not interrupt sex, and your partner will not feel the coil or thread.
A trained nurse of doctor can remove the IUD anytime, but you will have to use condoms during sex or even abstain from sex for 7 days before the coil is removed. Note that the coil can be used as emergency contraception if it is inserted up to 5 days after you have had unprotected sex to prevent pregnancy. Also, note that it will not protect you from STIs, so you should get tested if you feel you have been exposed to an STI.
Finally, the IUD does not contain any hormone; instead, it slowly releases copper, preventing sperm from surviving in the uterus, cervix or fallopian tubes. It also stops fertilised eggs from implanting in the womb.
Benefits of non-hormonal coil
- You do not have to prepare for or interrupt sex
- It works for 5 – 10 years, depending on the type that is used
- It is more effective than a morning-after pill
- It is not affected by other medicines
- It is a hormone-free method
- You would not have to take a pill everyday
- Your fertility returns to normal once the IUD is removed
Who is suitable for IUD?
Although most women can use the IUD, your doctor will first ask about your medical history and your family’s medical history to determine if it is the best method for you or not. However, the IUD is a good alternative for women who cannot take the hormones oestrogen and progestogen. On that note, the IUD may not be suitable for women who have or experience the following;
- Pelvic infection
- Unexplained vaginal bleeding
- Heavy periods
- Allergy to copper
Possible side effects and risks of IUD
There are side effects that are quite common; however, they may be short term or long term. The short term side effects include the following;
- Cramps and spotting that lasts for a few days after the fitting
- Heavier or more painful periods that should settle after a few months
The long term side effects include;
- Irregular bleeding for about 6 months
Things to note
The IUD has two thin threads that hang down just a little way from your womb into the top of your vagina. Your clinician will teach you how to feel for the threads and check that the IUD is still in place. If you do not feel the threads anymore or feel that the IUD has moved, you must see your clinician as quickly as possible because you may no longer be protected against pregnancy.
Contact our professional Gynaecologist in London for a private IUD fitting near me or more information about IUD devices. Give us a call or send us an email to get in touch with us.