The ParaGard IUD: First 5 Weeks

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

It’s been 5 weeks exactly since I got it. And I’ve had my fair share of ups and downs since that day.

The night after the insertion, I felt sick. I had the worst cramps of my life, and couldn’t sleep. I dragged myself out of bed to the couch so I wouldn’t bug my husband, and I just cried. I felt like my body was trying to destroy itself and felt like an idiot for feeling this way over a small insertion.

I ended up calling in to work the next day because I couldn’t sleep at all. At 6 in the morning (12 hours after the Paragard IUD insertion), I still felt lousy. I took more pain meds throughout the morning and finally fell asleep.

About 18 hours after the actual insertion, I felt more normal. The cramps were light and manageable.

The next day, they were still light and manageable.

And each day after got better. Three days after the Paragard IUD insertion, I felt normal.

But that’s when I started to notice a thick, snot-like white mucus as discharge (there’s no way to sugar-coat this, again). I saw it in the toilet, in my underwear, on toilet paper. I stared in horror at this… as it was something I had never experienced (it was my body’s way of trying to expell the inferior object and clean out my system). This heavy mucus lasted two weeks.

I booked an appointment with another doc in my clinic to give me a routine pelvic exam BEFORE my 6-week date because I was so worried about the heavy amount. Mind you, there were no signs it was BAD discharge. It was clear-to-white in color, didn’t itch, didn’t smell. It was just as if my body were leaking (or sneezing…take it whatever way you want. It’s disgusting nonetheless!).

The doc looked at it, agreed it was a lot, but that I shouldn’t worry. He took a swab culture anyway. It came back normal.

Once I got my period (yay 4th week in!), the mucus disappeared. And instead was replaced with my very first period from hell.

For the first four days, I wasn’t really sure whether this was simply heavy spotting, or an actual period. I was told my period would be “heavier than normal”, but what I was experiencing would have been a welcome ACTUAL period! My god! I could survive on just pantyliners! I even had a brief thought of never having to buy another tampon again.

I was very wrong.

It turns out that what I was experiencing was four days of heavy spotting. Monday through Thursday were just gearing me up for the horror of Friday night. When I bled through my pad, onto my pajama pants, blankets, and covers.

And then It just got worse. Friday night through Monday were the worst period days I’ve ever experienced in my life. I went through the large, super tampons every 35 minutes. I would be rushing to the bathroom that Monday after having felt my pad needing to be changed to find that I bled through my tampon, through my pad, and ALMOST through my pants.

In the split second I took my tampon out, I managed to drip a solid line of blood on my boots, the floor, the toilet seat, the side of the toilet, and god knows where else. I didn’t even FEEL it coming out of me. It was like a scene from a horror story.

Those four days were ridiculous. I was upset constantly, unable to control this ridiculous amount of bleeding, and also had a gigantic headache. At this point, I was so worried about the flow and my headaches that I called the doc. He said to give it another month. I didn’t like that answer, so I called a different doc. That one said it was ridiculous I was bleeding through a tampon in 35 minutes, and that the headaches were probably not a good sign (anemic, dehydrated, etc). That one prescribed me some birth control pills to take to stop the bleeding. I didn’t take those, however, because I was wanting to see for the first time, how this would go. (If my health were in some serious harm, I would have. Don’t worry. I have them for next time just in case).

Tuesday started as a normal, heavy birth-control-like period. And then it stayed until Friday night. I was fine Saturday with no bleeding whatsoever.

Now that it’s after my period, I don’t have any sort of mucus (that must have gotten out of my system so I could experience that pleasant period last week…).

I see my doctor again to check that the strings are still in place and everything is hunky dory this time next week. Then I don’t have to see him again until my annual.

Sounds great, right?

I’ll definitely update you on my NEXT period. I’ve been told that it will be different. If it’s not? I’m not sure the Paragard IUD is for me. It’s not very freeing for women if we’re bound for two weeks straight by fear of bleeding through everything in 30 minutes (my commute to work is longer than that! No bathrooms on trains!).

(Btw: I did happen to bleed through everything AND onto a coworker’s chair one day that week. It was mortifying. And absolutely disgusting. I wanted to cry). 


~ by shespeakstruth on October 25, 2012.