An intrauterine device (IUD) is a small plastic and copper T-shape, which is placed inside the uterus. The IUD was invented in the early 1950s, and has been improved over the years, although it is still not a method that all women like.
How the IUD works
The IUD prevents sperm from reaching an egg or an egg from settling into the lining of the uterus. The intrauterine device is as effective as the pill.
Some IUDs also release a small amount of hormones for extra safety.
Advantages of the intrauterine device
- the intrauterine device does not interfere with sex
- the intrauterine device can stay in for three up to 10 years
- the intrauterine device gives you control
Disadvantages of the intrauterine device
- the intrauterine device must be fitted by a qualified doctor or nurse
- the intrauterine device can cause heavy and irregular periods in the beginning
- the intrauterine device can cause infection, especially in the beginning
How the IUD is used
The intrauterine device is inserted into the uterus by a qualified doctor a few days before or after the beginning of your period. A careful check is made to see if you are not pregnant or have any infection. You are given instructions to come back for a check-up at a later date.