What you need to know about IUDs, the invisible birth control
Don’t settle for the same old sex shizz you did when you had braces or pimples. Although you may have sampled different sexual positions and partners before getting comfortable with your current jam, if you haven’t been equally exploratory with birth control, it may be time to upgrade to a method that better suits you and your partner’s current needs. So get ready from some straight talk about the intrauterine device (IUD) because I’ve come up with a cheat sheet to get schooled on this increasingly popular choice.
First, a heads up: Lovers for whom pregnancy prevention isn’t an issue don’t need IUDs, and the device won’t protect you from sexually transmitted infections like HIV and sexually transmitted infections and diseases (STIs/STDs) unless you pair it with a male or female condom.
According to Guttmacher Institute, almost 1 in every 10 American women using contraception in the 1970s picked IUDs; however, they fell out of popularity and out of the market after a spate of deaths, miscarriages, and infertility-inducing disasters. Scary stuff, right? Well, they’re back and now offer better safety. More than 2 million American women use them — the highest usage rate in nearly three decades.
No one knows for sure how it works — for real, it’s a longstanding mystery — but the IUD likely cockblocks sperm by either preventing it from entering the uterus or preventing the egg from being fertilized. A doctor inserts the T-shaped device, and it’s effective as hell as preventing pregnancy. It is undetectable, reversible, easy to use, and once it is in, you’re pretty much good to go.
I’m not going to tell you or your lover to let anyone shove a foreign object in a uterus without substantial homework. Be sure to check out other alternatives to the pill such as the implant, the shot, the ring, the patch, diaphragms, and cervical caps. That said, if you have the kind of sex and produces babies and you’re ready to say “hello spontaneous and pregnancy-free sex” with an IUD, here’s a very quickie overview to help you talk about about the benefits — and drawbacks! — of the three most common options.