The ParaGard IUD: Decision and Insertion

Let me say that I’m writing this because when I was looking for more user-experiences with this IUD? I came across nothing but forums from women who hadn’t bothered to look up information on this themselves. It wasn’t helpful, useful, or what I wanted. I wanted something to recount their experience with me to fill me in on what this experience was like for them. So, I decided to document mine while it was still in my head (also, this post couldn’t be published on my public blog. I figured the anonymous blog was far better!)

I had thought about getting an IUD for years. I was 17 went I first got birth control. And after trying three different combinations of hormones in three different pills, I finally settled on one that didn’t make me insane, eat everything in sight, or ache.

I was on that same birth control pill (Ortho-Novum 1/35) for the next 8 years. My body was starting to feel….different. My breasts had tenderness–so much so that I couldn’t sleep comfortably on my stomach anymore. I felt like my cravings were getting out of control. And my mind started to feel like it just wasn’t mine anymore.

And then I started thinking about the pill. It’s designed to make my body think I’m pregnant. So therefore, I can’t get pregnant. Was my body really thinking that I had been pregnant for the past 8 years? What on EARTH could that be doing to my internal system? I have a history of breast cancer in the family, and the fact that I was throwing hormones at myself voluntarily didn’t seem to make me feel better about staying healthy.

So I started researching other non-hormonal methods. Condoms are fine and all, but I don’t trust them without a back-up method. Diaphragm was not even a consideration for me, as I’m not that comfortable and confident about inserting properly. Paragard seemed like a great option.

I went to my doctor and got more information. We determined, based on my history, that the Paragard IUD seemed like a good fit for me (I’m not interested in having kids, and this particular one came with the added bonus of being able to keep it in for 10 years! Yahoo!).

After vetting the costs through my insurance (it was covered), I made an appointment for a Thursday night, during the week of my period (while on pills, my period only lasted three days. So I had a very short window in  which to get this thing!).

I was told I’d feel achy–so I told my husband to come with just in case I wasn’t able to drive. But really, I wanted him there for support. I was scared out of my mind. I took two Ibuprofen before I went.

When the nurse called me back, I was told to pee in a cup so they could take a pregnancy test (they refused to tell me what I was doing though. I wasn’t happy about this and my rights to know as a patient, but I didn’t bitch then. I was already nervous). After determining I wasn’t pregnant–because my period wasn’t enough to prove to them–I undressed from bottom down.

The doc came in, inserted the normal duck-billed plastic opener in me, and explained what he was doing. He’d stick a device inside me to measure my uterus. I would then feel a pinch. Then, he would insert the IUD.

I prepared myself as much as I could…but unfortunately? Nothing could have prepared me for the pain I felt. It was something from deep within… like someone had reached through my insides to suffocate them. My body went cold with pain. I actually yelled.

After breathing ridiculously hard, I focused back on my doc. He looked at me and said, “That pain? That you just felt? You’re going to feel it once more as I insert the IUD.”

“Once more? Like again?” I asked incredulously. I wasn’t sure I could do it. I was willing to just leave right then and there (it DOES hurt like hell if you’ve never birthed anything before, fyi).

“Yep.” And then he went in, caused me pain again (it wasn’t as bad the second time but still hurt like hell. Don’t let me make you think it was all peachy keen).

The pain subsided within 20 seconds after he actually inserted the Paragard IUD. He washed up, reiterated the experiences I’d be having over the next 6 weeks, and then asked me to make a follow-up appointment so he could check the strings were still in place and I was ok.

He came back in the room a few minutes later and asked if I wanted to have my husband come back and help me get dressed. I said yes.

While getting dressed, I became dizzy. I lost my center of balance, my body kept going cold, and I felt disoriented. My husband was there to prop me up and make sure my pants were on the right way.

I walked to the reception desk to make a follow-up appointment and my peripherals went black. I felt immediately dizzy and walked QUICKLY to a seat. The receptionist was wonderful, gave me a cup of water, and said it was absolutely normal I was feeling this way. I wasn’t as happy.

But after sitting for a few minutes, I felt a lot better. My body started to normalize, and my husband was with me to get me in the car. THANK GOD I BROUGHT HIM. I wouldn’t have been able to drive!

Then we went home.

(my next post will be about the experiences after the Paragard IUD, up until my next period. As of now, it hasn’t been 6 weeks yet)

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~ by shespeakstruth on October 24, 2012.

One Response to “The ParaGard IUD: Decision and Insertion”

  1. […] Yesterday, I wrote about my decision to get the Paragard IUD, and my experience with the insertion. […]

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