An intrauterine device (IUD) with copper, also known as the intrauterine coil, is a type of intrauterine device which contains copper. It's T-shaped, hence called Copper T.
Intrauterine devices prevent pregnancy by stopping sperm from reaching and fertilizing eggs.
Insertion of Copper T must be done by a trained Medical Practitioner. DO NOT attempt insertion on your own.
It is used for birth control and emergency contraception within five days of unprotected sex.
It is one of the most effective forms of birth control with a one-year failure rate of around 0.7%.
The Copper-T is a tiny device that when put into the uterus correctly (by a doctor), works 99% of the time.
The device is placed in the uterus and lasts up to Its lifespan (for example 3,5,10 years).
It can be used by women of all ages regardless of whether or not they have had children. Following removal, fertility quickly returns.
It's easily inserted inside the uterus during the 5th to 15th day of the menstrual cycle by your gynecologist.
Copper-T's don't protect against STDs, and a condom is always the best bet for that.
Hormonal Intrauterine Devices
As a woman, especially as a sexually active woman, the concern of an unwanted pregnancy is paramount. So what are the best options available to women that save them from having an unwanted pregnancy?
Most Indian women would like to tend to pop up an emergency pill in case of unprotected sex. But that is not a sustainable solution for excessive use because it gives the body a hormonal shock in order to prevent pregnancy.
The other forms of contraception for women include birth control pills and intrauterine devices (hormonal and non-hormonal). While birth control pills usually work by preventing ovulation, hormonal contraceptives work in a couple of ways.
They help prevent pregnancy by either making the cervical mucus too thick which blocks the sperm from entering. Or making the uterine lining very thin which blocks the egg from attaching to it.
Copper T, a form of IUD, prevents pregnancy just because sperm don't like being near copper. They are usually non-hormonal.
Hormonal IUDs work by releasing a man-made form of the hormone progesterone called progestin, which is released over a period of years to prevent pregnancy. IUDs also help with excruciating period pain and heavy bleeding.
Like any other contraception, method IUDs have their own set of side effects like spotting, irregular periods, etc but these symptoms usually go away in 3-6 months when your body gets used to it.
IUDs don't prevent Sexually Transmitted Diseases, so make sure to still use a condom during sexual intercourse.
Side effects of copper T
Copper T is not advisable for women who had a C-section.
The thread attached to the device makes it uncomfortable down there.
It is observed to cause chronic back pain.
The use of copper T is observed to raise body fat.
There are certain supposes or doubts that the use of copper T can cause the risk of birth defects in the child.
How effective are IUDs?
If you use an IUD correctly, your chance of getting pregnant is less than 1%.
What are the benefits of IUDs?
They last a long time.
They're mostly hassle-free. Once you have one inserted, you don't have to think about it, and neither does your partner.
It’s one cost, upfront.
They’re safe to use if you're breastfeeding.
Who can use them?
Most healthy women can use an IUD. They’re especially suited to women with one partner and at low risk of contracting an STD. IUDs don't protect against STDs. You shouldn’t use one if:
You have an STD or had a recent pelvic infection.
You have cancer of the cervix or uterus.
You have unexplained vaginal bleeding.
You can’t use the copper IUD if you have an allergy to copper or have Wilson's disease, which causes your body to hold too much copper.
How is an IUD removed?
Your doctor will take out the IUD in their office. It should only take a few minutes. You’ll put your feet in stirrups and the doctor will use forceps to slowly pull the IUD out. You may have some cramping and bleeding, but this should go away in 1-2 days.
Can my IUD fall out?
Your doctor will check your device during your regular office visits. Your cervix should hold the IUD in place, but in rare cases, it can fall all the way or part of the way out.
This is more likely if:
You don't have children.
You’re under 20 years old.
You had the IUD put in right after having a baby or after having a second-trimester abortion.
You have fibroids in your uterus.
Your uterus is an unusual size or shape.