It has been awhile since I wrote my original IUD post about what to expect during and immediately after the insertion process. For those still on the fence about the IUD, I thought I would provide an update on my own experiences through the first month and a half after having my Mirena inserted.
In case you missed the original post, I basically had an emergency IUD insertion after my pill started giving me some complications and there was a press release on my specific brand having increased risks of serious side effects for those with certain medical conditions that I have and/or run a risk for. That meant that I booked my appointment and traveled out of state in order to get my Mirena as quickly as possible.
To be honest, the first couple of weeks after I got my Mirena did not go as smoothly as I had hoped. My body did not seem to immediately take to it. This is not an abnormal occurrence, it may take a couple of months for the body to fully adjust and let cramps and menstruation even out. I had absolutely awful cramps at the begining, sometimes so badly that I had to immediately go home, take some pain relievers, and apply heat. About two weeks in I felt pain so sharp that I thought something was seriously wrong and had to have a friend bring me home since I was having trouble walking.
I then ended up getting my period about a week earlier than I normally would if I had still been on my birth control pill. It also presented itself very differently than it normally did. My experience with my period and the IUD should not be taken as the norm. Many people stop menstruating immediately after having a hormonal IUD put in. Some do not. It really does vary from person to person. However, according to Planned Parenthood, “ On average, menstrual flow is reduced by 90 percent” with the Mirena.
My biggest complaint about my period and the IUD is that I was unable to use my menstrual cup. After getting a device put in, you should wait up to six weeks before using a tampon or cup, (which is also when you should be returning for your check-up). My gynecologist recommends that I stop using my cup altogether, which I am definitely not sold on. With quite a bit of research I have found that there really is no conclusive evidence about if an IUD can be dislodged by a menstrual cup or not. Supposedly, the suction may dislodge your device during removal. The internet seems pretty split on if it is a good idea to keep using your cup or not. Many people have been using both for years without issue, but some have experienced complications. If you choose to use a cup, make sure to break your menstrual cup seal before removing it from your body, and check your IUD strings at the end of each cycle to ensure everything is still in the right position.
Luckily, after having my period all pain and cramping completely ceased. Now, a month and a half later my biggest problem is constantly forgetting that I do not need to take my birth control pill everyday. Since my insurance did cover the cost of the procedure I now have free birth control for the next five years. I do not need to worry about it until I am 27! I know that getting my Mirena was one of the best decisions I could make for myself, and I am so glad I did it.