Pregnancy is a period that brings many changes. And when that time passes, it is normal for many doubts to arise related to the health of the baby and the mother.
One of the most common themes at this stage is contraception. After all, the woman has just gone through the pregnancy and therefore, she must wait a while to have other children, if she so wishes.
So let’s talk about a contraceptive method that can be used after pregnancy: the IUD.
What is an IUD and what is it for?
The Intrauterine Device (IUD) is a form of treatment to prevent conception. If used correctly and with gynecological guidance, it tends not to harm the health and fertility of the woman, since it is reversible and can be removed in the future.
In a “T” shape, the device is inserted into the patient’s uterus and works because it releases substances that prevent the encounter between the egg and the sperm.
It is effective in most cases, with a margin of error of 1 in 100 women who choose to use it, according to the Brazilian Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics Associations (Febrasgo).
There are 2 types of IUD: progesterone and copper. The main difference between the two is the presence of hormones.
The copper IUD does not contain hormones. Its action occurs through the inflammation that it causes in the uterine wall (but that does not cause any damage to the organism). It just prevents the egg fertilized by the sperm (zygote) from attaching to the wall of the uterus.
The progesterone device is made with hormones, preventing the fixation of the zygote in the uterine wall through a controlled release of hormones.
The IUD does not hinder the time of sexual intercourse and has a high contraceptive efficacy – not to mention that there is no risk of using it, as with contraceptives in pills, for example.
Regarding the disadvantages, the device can cause a lot of discomfort for the woman, such as bleeding and cramps. In addition, there is still the possibility that the object will be rejected and expelled from the uterus.
How long after pregnancy can I use an IUD?
If the woman wishes, the IUD can be placed up to 48 hours after the child’s birth, depending on the type of delivery. In women who have had a cesarean, the device can be inserted into the uterus 10 or 15 minutes after surgery.
Those who had a normal delivery, however, should wait at least 12 hours, since the uterus “worked” enough to expel the baby out of the belly.
If the procedure is not done in that period of time, it is necessary to wait at least 4 weeks to avoid the natural expulsion of the device.
Who is breastfeeding can IUD?
Yes, those who are breastfeeding can put IUDs in peace of mind, since the intrauterine device does not influence the production of breast milk. The only recommendation is that this procedure be done under the supervision of a gynecologist to choose the type of device indicated for each case.
How is the IUD placed? Is it safe?
The implantation of the IUD does not require anesthesia and lasts about 15 minutes.
For it to be done safely, it is necessary that the cavity of the uterus is large enough to hold the object. This analysis is done by a gynecologist.
So here is a really cool tip: if the woman is still pregnant but already knows that she wants to have the IUD inserted after delivery, talk to the obstetrician who will deliver the baby.
Thus, it is already possible to do all the tests correctly and after delivery, place the device in a safe and healthy way.
Yes, IUD placement can be painful, as the device is inserted into the uterus.
During the first few days, it is also normal for uterine cramps to occur.
If the woman is feeling a lot of pain or discomfort, the ideal is to try to talk to a (a) medical professional who can prescribe an analgesic medicine.
Does the IUD affect menstruation?
The copper IUD increases menstrual flow and tends to cause more cramps, as it is capable of generating inflammation in the uterus.
In these cases, it can happen that the blood flow becomes so intense that the patient starts to present anemia , but this is evaluated by professionals and, therefore, the occurrence is not frequent.
The progesterone IUD (also known as Minera, which is a brand of this product) will reduce or even stop menstrual flow.
The time difference also varies. Well, the IUD needs to be changed after a certain period of time.
The copper IUD can stay in the uterus for up to 12 years, while the progesterone IUD needs to be changed more frequently, every 5 years or so.
If this change is not made in the correct period, the device loses its contraceptive effectiveness and may even cause inflammation.
What are the contraindications?
Women such as uterine malformations, diseases such as endometriosis and ovarian cancer , active infections in the uterus and with suspected pregnancy will not be able to have any type of IUD, since the object may make these conditions even worse.
Some of these conditions, infections for example, can appear during pregnancy or even in the postpartum period.
In such cases, the best option is to talk to the gynecologist and obstetrician who accompanies the case and talk about the possibility of placing the device or not.
Does an IUD replace a condom?
Although it is very safe, with effectiveness rates greater than 95%, to be more sure that conception will really be avoided, it is important to use a double contraceptive method: like the IUD and the condom .
The IUD is a safe device that can be placed right after delivery, as it does not interfere with breastfeeding.
In case of doubt, seek gynecological guidance. The Minute Healthy team brings a lot of other information about women’s health . Follow our posts!