Intrauterine Contraception (IUC) Fitting Tips
Here are some practical tips to help you before your intra-uterine contraception (IUC) fitting.
Before Your Appointment
We want to make your clinic visit as straightforward as possible and fit the IUD/IUS at a single appointment. Therefore, it is important that you have read all the information and are suitable for the procedure on the day you come. You can also discuss other methods with us and ask any questions.
If you are not using a hormonal method of contraception, bring the first date of your last menstrual period to your appointment.
If you are using condoms for contraception, make sure there have been no occasions when the condom broke or slipped off or you simply didn’t use one. If there have been any episodes in the last three weeks when this may have happened, please tell the doctor or nurse – we may have to delay your IUC insertion.
If you are on the contraceptive pill, please make sure you have taken it correctly, especially in the three weeks leading up to your appointment.
If you already have an IUC in place and are having it changed, you must not have unprotected sex in the seven days before your appointment.
Having IUC fitted can be a little uncomfortable, but this varies greatly from person to person. Some women may benefit from taking pain relief before their appointment in the form of ibuprofen or paracetamol. It is best to take something that you have used before and which you know you are able to tolerate.
You may need to continue with painkillers for the first 24 hours following your procedure, but this varies from person to person – it may be worth making sure you have supplies at home.
Allow sufficient time for your appointment. Although the procedure takes approximately 15 to 20 minutes, occasionally women feel light-headed after fitting and require a little extra time to fully recover.
It is recommended that you have someone you can contact or bring with you to take you home if required. However, most women are able to drive or walk home.
Try to avoid bringing small children or babies to your appointment. If this is not possible, please arrange to bring someone with you to care for them whilst you are undergoing your fitting procedure.
How should I feel afterwards?
Most women experience some period-like discomfort for 24-48 hours. There may be some bleeding or spotting for a few days. If an IUD is fitted during a period, the period may be heavier and last slightly longer than usual.
What should I do afterwards?
- Take simple painkillers such as paracetamol and/or ibuprofen.
- Avoid strenuous activity.
- If experiencing tummy pain then a hotwater bottle may help.
- You should avoid the use of tampons for this bleed and your next period.
When can I resume sex?
You can resume sexual intercourse when you feel up to it – the Mirena coil does not work for contraception for the first 7 days.
In there anything I should look out for?
Learn to check the string each month after your period to make sure the IUD is still in the right place – if the string feels like it is shorter or longer than normal or you cannot feel the string at all use condoms until you have had the IUD checked by the doctor. · If you have any unusual symptoms including a discharge from your vagina, pain low in your abdomen or deep pain during intercourse, see the doctor.
If your period is more than a week overdue, you have a change in your usual bleeding pattern or you are concerned that you could be pregnant, go to see your doctor or clinic for a pregnancy test.
If you, or your partner, ever have casual sex or if you have a new sexual partner, use a condom every time until you both have been checked for sexually transmissible infections (STIs).
Keep a record of the date for replacement.
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