FAQs About IUD Insertion for First-timers

Many women shy away from intrauterine devices, such as Skyla, because of their mistaken beliefs about its insertion into the vagina. These beliefs include the pain involved during the insertion, the possibility of it being implanted into the uterus, and the risk of infections.  But this isn’t the case when an IUD is inserted by a qualified health professional!  

Here are a few important facts about the contraceptive method that every woman should know.  

How Is It Inserted?

Your doctor or nurse will first ask relevant questions about your medical history to ensure that you’re a good candidate for an IUD. You may even be tested for STDs since these can affect the efficacy of the device. Your vagina, cervix and uterus will also be checked.

You may also be instructed to take a medication, which will help in opening up and/or numbing your cervix before the device can be inserted. You will feel a slight discomfort when a speculum is placed in your vagina but it’s a necessary step. Your doctor will then use a special inserter device to place the IUD into your uterus.

How Does It Feel?  

Every woman will have a different experience with IUD insertion depending on her age, physical condition, and pain tolerance. Most women can experience slight pain, mild discomfort and/or cramps during the IUD insertion.

While the pain can be worse, it will likely only last for 1-2 minutes. The entire process only takes 5 minutes or so from the time a speculum is inserted into the vagina to the time it’s removed.   

Aside from the numbing agent, your doctor may also recommend a pain medicine before IUD insertion. It will not only lessen the slight discomfort during insertion but it can also prevent cramps afterwards.  

Some women feel dizzy either during the insertion or immediately after it with a few actually fainting. But if you’re a relatively healthy woman, your risk for these side effects will be significantly lower.

You may, nonetheless, ask somebody to come with you on your appointment so you don’t have to drive, not to mention that you should relax at home for the day. You may feel just fine to go back to work the day after but you may also want to take it easy for a day or two. You can use heating pads and take pain medication to ease the cramps, too.  

Your doctor can insert an IUD into your uterus at any time of the month, whether you have your period or not. You can even get it after you have given birth or you have a miscarriage or an abortion.  

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