Episode 58: Is The IUD Right for Me?

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I’m quite confident that some right-wing forces were conspiring against the creation and release of this episode (more on that in the episode itself), but we’ve been promising a discussion on the IUD since summer, and at Guinea Pigging Green we make good on our promises!

Today we’re talking about my experience getting an IUD. The good, the bad, and the mildly graphic.

You can listen to the episode using the player below, or you can subscribe to our podcast on iTunes (while you’re there, leave us a rating! It really helps us reach more ears).

Good information on getting an IUD is hard to come by, which is why it was important for me to put it “on the air” for anyone who, like me, had questions (and I had a lot of questions).

Some quick facts:

  • I got my IUD through the Bay Centre for Birth Control in Toronto. They were amazing.
  • My copper IUD (which you can use for up to 5 years) cost $50.
  • Insertion feels like acute period cramps, and for me it wasn’t nearly as bad as other accounts I’ve read online.

For everything else, you’re going to have to listen to our show! We referenced a few resources including:

Have any questions about the process of getting an IUD that we didn’t answer? Leave a note in the comments, or send us a tweet @GreenGuineaPigs and I’ll do my best to respond to anything you may ask!

Have a fab week,

— Laura

The IUD image above is not mine (you’re welcome), and is from the Cosmopolitan article 12 Things Every Woman Should Know About IUDs.

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  • Laura

    I tuned in after seeing this promoted on Instagram, because I got an IUD almost six months ago and I absolutely love it. I recommend it to all my friends who want to “baby proof” their uterus! I wish more doctors would discuss options beyond the pill.

    I requested mine through a walk-in clinic in Ontario. I was referred to an OB/GYN and I waited about two months for the appointment. I got the Jaydess because it has the highest effectiveness, which was the most important factor to me, and the lowest amount of hormones. Plus it has the bonus side effect of lighter or non-existent periods :)

    • http://lifeinlimbo.org/ Stephanie Pellett

      Hey Laura,

      Thanks for the comment, and for listening! So cool that you got an IUD too. I totally agree that it’s a shame more doctors don’t talk about our other options. Thanks for adding to the conversation about the Jaydess option – I hadn’t heard of that before, but the bonuses sound great for that option too. Do you remember how much it cost? :)

      • Laura

        It’s around $300 and lasts for three years, so there’s a bigger cost obstacle than the copper IUD :( I was fortunate to have private insurance at the time that covered 80% of it. It’s called ‘Skyla’ in the U.S. so there’s more info online under that name.

        • http://lifeinlimbo.org/ Stephanie Pellett

          Awesome, thanks for the info! Both the copper and the hormonal versions have their ups and downs, but I think they’re both such great options for different reasons. I’m so glad to hear you found a method that worked for you :)

  • Heather

    Steph,
    I completely get your reservation about the pain. When I had my IUD put in 2.5years ago it was the most painful thing I have ever experienced (worse than appendicitis and ovarian cysts), but it didn’t last long. I was in intense pain for about 20minutes afterwards, and then it declined from there. By the time I walked home it was gone.
    I would suggest, as Laura did, bringing someone with you. Also, the reason for the pain is that your uterus is rejecting the foreign object (IUD) in you, so instead of advil/pain killers, muscle relaxants work better at reducing the pain (take about 1hr before the appointment)—something I learned after the fact :(

    • http://lifeinlimbo.org/ Stephanie Pellett

      Hi Heather – whew, thanks for your comment! It’s always good to get input from different people because everyone’s experience is a little different. I was relieved to hear that Laura didn’t experience much pain, but I’m sorry to hear that you did – and that it was so intense! Also, awesome tip about the muscle relaxants, that’s so helpful. I’ll be sure to keep that in mind if/when I go through the procedure. And for SURE I would have someone with me. Thank you so much for your advice :) By the way, a question – would you say that the pain was similar to what Laura said, like period cramps? I wonder if it was a different kind of sensation for you because you mentioned it was worse than appendicitis! Thanks again Heather :)

      • Heather

        Don’t hate me, but I’ve never had period cramps. I got monthly cysts instead, so I’m not sure how to explain them. But I agree with Laura in that it didn’t feel pinchy at all, but it was just generally uncomfortable. I found I just felt very weak and achy and I couldn’t find a comfortable position, so I stayed rolled up in a ball on the plinth. It wasn’t scary, so I hope I didn’t scare you, but I’ve definitely had more enjoyable experiences.

        • http://lifeinlimbo.org/ Stephanie Pellett

          Haha I imagine that cysts are not much more comfortable than cramps, probably much less so! Don’t worry, you didn’t scare me any more than I already kind of was ;) but glad to hear that the sensations were more of an ache than a pinch for you too. Honestly, thank you so much for your contributions! I updated the post to show your tip about the muscle relaxants. The more info the better! :)

    • laurafraser

      Hey Heather! I wonder if it would be easier now for you to have it put in than it was 2.5 years ago… I made a concerted effort to practice deep yogi breathing the whole way through to relax every muscle. Two years ago I imagine myself being much more tense and unable to relax, which would have made the process much worse.

      • Heather

        I’m not sure. I’ve been doing yoga for 10 years, but it might impact it. However, I think having someone in the room with me probably would have provided some much-needed emotional support.

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