In 2018, I had a pregnancy scare. I am single so my partners have basically just been “friends with benefits.” I knew who it was that maybe got me pregnant and the idea that he would be the father of my child was not who I wanted to be in my life forever in that way. My period was either on time or a few days early, never more than 1 day late. I was 3 or 4 days late so I was freaking out. I started thinking about what I would do if I was pregnant. I used to say that I would make an adoption plan and have an open adoption, but I still have immediate things I wanted to do so I didn’t think I could be pregnant for 9 months. The pregnancy test was negative and I got my period the next day but I was definitely scared straight. I knew that just using condoms wasn’t enough for me to feel confident I wasn’t going to get knocked up.
With the current administration and its views on birth control I wasn’t confident in using the Nuvaring again in case my insurance went up or some dystopian crap went down and all birth control was banned. I wanted something that lasted a bit longer so I was leaning towards the implant and was interested in learning about the IUD. It turned out my current insurance completely covered Kylena so I’m super happy about that. If things do go very south, it will be very hard to force me to get those out of my body without my consent.
Before getting the IUD
During my last doctor’s appointment, I had a pap smear and told my doctor I wanted more information about the implant and IUDs. She explained the pros and cons of both and explained the different IUDs out there. During the exam she decided Kylena was best for the size of my cervix. Mirena is the original hormone one but it is a bit bigger, lasts 5 years, and stops your period. It’s commonly used for women who have had children. Kylena’s size was better for me and I didn’t care if I spotted or if it only lasts a minimum of 3 years.
I really trusted my doctor when we were talking about the IUD. I told her my concerns about people I knew having problems with it coming out and causing more harm than good. She assured me that because she measures the cervix before even deciding on a specific IUD, she has never had a patient experience it coming out and causing damage. She was very blunt and upfront with me, which made me trust her more.
You must be on your period when it is inserted. Some people say it has to be the last day but my doctor and the Kylena pamphlets I read said it could be any day of your period. Your cervix is more open on your period so it is the best time to put it in. I was also prescribed a medicine that would dilate my cervix a bit more. I forgot to mention to my doctor the day it was put in but I did experience cramping in the middle of the night but I fell asleep after a little tossing and completely forgot it happened.
I want fur babies not real babies featuring Wesley Rae [not my dog].
Day of IUD insertion
I wasn’t nervous at all thinking about the pain or “permanence” of it. Maybe the fact that I got my nipples pierced a week before shifted my pain spectrum. When I was walked in, I had to give a urine sample to test if I was pregnant, (this was where I thought to take out my tampon). If I was pregnant they obviously would have stopped the procedure. Then my weight and blood pressure was taken like normal. The nurse gave me some Ibuprofen to help with the cramping I was going to feel after, to give it some time to kick in. I was left alone in the room to undress from the waist down and lay down with the paper sheet across my lap.
When the nurse practitioner came in we talked and then started the exam. She felt my vagina and cervix to get an idea of where everything was going and making sure the size of the IUD was appropriate again. Then she used the speculum and wiped my cervix to find the entrance. She was talking me through 90% of what she was doing which helped me understand what I was feeling in my vagina and cervix. Then she put the device in and released the IUD, and this was where the painful cramps started. It was really just 20 seconds of bad cramps and then it calmed down. After everything was out of me, the nurse practitioner had me lay on my side for about 5 minutes, I think to make sure I wasn’t going to pass out. I was told not to stand up until she came back, and when she did she just checked in with me again and told me to make a follow up appointment next month to make sure everything was in good shape.
I haven’t felt much more cramping, nothing more than my period. She told me to take 600mg of Ibuprofen every 6 hours to help with the cramping and that it would reduce the swelling of my cervix and further help with the pain.
Experiences after getting the IUD
I only had mild discomfort so I took some Ibuprofen. What I am hating most now is the fact that I have to use pads. I HATE pads. They are so wasteful compared to a menstrual cup. I forgot to put on a pad before work and I never carry them around so I had to make one out of a tampon so I didn’t bleed through my underwear. You aren’t supposed to put a tampon or menstrual cup in your vagina for this period because of the swelling.
Still experiencing cramping but I don’t like taking a lot of medicine. Unless the pain is really bad one day I doubt I’ll take more. Still annoyed every time I have to put a pad on because I know how much trash it is creating compared to the cup. I am planning on buying some of the Thinx underwear to try to cut down on my trash.
My period was much lighter with hardly any cramps. A week after my period I still had spotting. Its definitely inconvenient but not super noticeable. It feels like discharge and doesn’t bleed into my clothes like period blood does.
My period was a couple days late and the first actual day was very light.
Month 3 and 4:
These were like normal periods. My doctor mentioned that during sex my partner may be able to feel it. I asked a partner and he said he didn’t feel it until I said something. I have not had any side effect from the hormones, like acne or weight gain.
This period was VERY light. After your body starts getting used to the hormones, you may have lighter periods. This seems to be the case for me, and I can still tell when I am about to get my period, thanks to my period tracker app Eve.
I think this was definitely a good choice for where I am in my life and my body. No babies for me! I hope this helps if you are looking into getting an IUD. Always check with your doctor and ask questions. It is your body and you have to live with it.