IUDs are flexible plastic T-shaped devices with a string for removal. They are inserted inside the uterus by a doctor for up to 3-10 years (depending on which kind).
Effectiveness: Over 99% effective
Price: $75-$400 depending on which type
Hormonal IUDs make periods much lighter with fewer cramps (especially Mirena). May cause spotting for the first few months.
Copper IUDs make periods heavier, longer and may cause more cramps. This can sometimes get better after the first 3-4 months.
A Copper IUD is the most effective emergency birth control method (if inserted within seven days of unprotected sex).
Cost: Hormonal: $400-$450, Copper: $75-$90 (both are covered under some health plans and with the Safe Methods Program)
Around $400 for up to 5 years
Made of plastic containing a slow release of a hormone called levonorgestrel (a type of progestin).
It thickens the cervical mucous to prevent fertilization of the egg and changes the uterus lining making a fertilized egg less likely to attach. The most effective reversible birth control available in Canada – only about 2/1000 pregnancies per year (compared to approximately 9/100 with pills and 18/100 with condoms).
Can be used as a treatment for heavy and/or painful periods.There may be irregular spotting at first for up to 3-6 months. Periods usually get lighter (less bleeding and cramping). Often periods stop completely, and this is completely safe.
It releases a very small amount of only one of the two hormones in birth control pills, patches and rings, so there is much less chance of negative hormonal side effects. A small number of users will experience hormonal side effects such as headache, moodiness, breast tenderness, bloating and acne but these often go away after a few months.
Around $400 for up to 5 years
Kyleena is very similar to the Mirena but has less hormone in it. This means the Kyleena makes periods lighter and less painful but not as effectively as the Mirena. There is less chance of periods stopping altogether compared to a Mirena (not having a period with a hormonal IUD is completely safe). Hormonal side effects are similar with both IUDs (most users have none). The Kyleena is also slightly smaller, which may be helpful for a small number of users.
Please note: If you are getting a hormonal IUD you should not have unprotected sex for at least seven days before your appointment, and for seven days afterward. After seven days a hormonal IUD is effective at preventing pregnancy.
$75 for up to 5 years or $90 for up to 10 years
It contains plastic and copper.
It prevents fertilization of an egg and/or changes the lining so that it’s less likely for a fertilized egg to attach to the uterus. About 8/1000 pregnancies per year (compared to approximately 9/100 with pills and 18/100 with condoms)
Periods may be heavier and longer by up to 65 percent and also more crampy. This can get better after 3-4 months.
A copper IUD is effective immediately after insertion. The most effective form of emergency contraception, it’s over 99% effective at preventing pregnancy (emergency pills are only 50-60%) if used within 7 days of unprotected sex.
Questions? Contact the Sex Sense Line at 604-731-7308 (1-800-739-7367) or www.sexsense.orgBack to Birth Control Methods