Gynecology Specialists
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to restore vaginal health.

 

Many gyn issues can rob a woman of her sense of well-being and happiness. This in-office treatment counteracts those forces and is:
- Painless
- Non-surgical
- Non-hormonal
- No Recovery Downtime

 

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Healthy Tips

IUDs and birth control implants

September 2014

Our GYN doctors have seen an increase in questions about birth control techniques and thought you, a loved one, or a friend might be interested in the following information.

IUDs and Birth Control Implants
Intrauterine devices (IUDs) and contraceptive implants are Long-Acting Reversible Contraception (LARC). Over time, LARC methods are 20 times more effective than birth control pills, the patch, or the vaginal ring.

What are Long-Acting Reversible Contraception (LARC) methods?
LARC methods include the intrauterine device (IUD) and the birth control implant. Both methods are highly effective in preventing pregnancy, last for several years, and are easy to use. Both are reversible—if you want to become pregnant or if you want to stop using them, you can have them removed at any time.

How effective are LARC methods?
The IUD and the implant are the most effective forms of reversible birth control available. During the first year of typical use, fewer than 1 in 100 women using an IUD or an implant will become pregnant.

How do LARC methods compare with other methods of contraception?
Over the long term, LARC methods are 20 times more effective than birth control pills, the patch, or the ring.

What is the intrauterine device (IUD)?
The IUD is a small, T-shaped, plastic device that is inserted into and left inside the uterus. There are two types of IUDs:

1. The hormonal IUD releases progestin. One hormonal IUD is approved for use for up to 5 years. Another is approved for use for up to 3 years.
2. The copper IUD does not contain hormones. It is approved for use for up to 10 years.

How does the IUD work?
Both types of IUDs work mainly by preventing fertilization of the egg by the sperm. The hormonal IUD also thickens cervical mucus, which makes it harder for sperm to enter the uterus and fertilize the egg, and keeps the lining of the uterus thin, which makes it less likely that a fertilized egg will attach to it.

What are the benefits of the IUD?

Once it is in place, you do not have to do anything else to prevent pregnancy.
No one can tell that you are using birth control.
It does not interfere with sex or daily activities.
It can be inserted immediately after an abortion, a miscarriage, or childbirth and while breastfeeding.
Almost all women are able to use an IUD.
If you wish to become pregnant or if you want to stop using it, you can simply have the IUD removed.
The hormonal IUD helps decrease menstrual pain and heavy menstrual bleeding.
The copper IUD also is the most effective form of emergency contraception.

 

How is the IUD inserted?
One of our GYN doctors will insert and remove the IUD. She will review your medical history and will perform a pelvic exam. To insert the IUD, our GYN doctor puts the IUD in a slender plastic tube, places the tube into the vagina and guides it through the cervix into the uterus. The tube is withdrawn, leaving the IUD in place.

What is the birth control implant?
The birth control implant is a single flexible rod about the size of a matchstick that is inserted under the skin in the upper arm. It releases progestin into the body. It protects against pregnancy for up to 3 years.

How does the birth control implant work?
The progestin in the implant prevents pregnancy mainly by stopping ovulation. In addition, the progestin in the implant thickens cervical mucus, which makes it harder for sperm to enter the uterus and fertilize the egg. Progestin also keeps the lining of the uterus thin, making it less likely that a fertilized egg will attach to it.

What are the benefits of the birth control implant?

Once it is in place, you do not have to do anything else to prevent pregnancy.
No one can tell that you are using birth control.
It can be inserted immediately after an abortion, a miscarriage, or childbirth and while breastfeeding.
It does not interfere with sex or daily activities.
Almost all women are able to use the implant.
If you wish to become pregnant or if you want to stop using it, you can simply have the implant removed.

 

How is the birth control implant inserted?
The implant is inserted into your arm by one of our GYN doctors. A small area on your upper arm is numbed with a local anesthetic. No incision is made. Our GYN doctor places the implant under the skin with a special inserter. The procedure takes only a few minutes.

How is the birth control implant removed?
To remove the implant, our GYN doctor again numbs the area. One small incision is made. The implant then is removed.


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If you have questions about birth control techniques, IUDs, birth control implants, or other LARCs, and live in Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Eastern Shore, Peninsula, Hampton Roads or North Carolina, please contact our GYN Clinic at (757) 312-8221 or by clicking here. Our GYN doctors can help you.


About our GYN Clinic

Our all-female practice of gynecologists covers a wide spectrum of health issues, including, birth control techniques, IUDs, birth control implants, and LARCs.  Our GYN office cares for women of all ages in Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Peninsula, Eastern Shore, Hampton Roads and North Carolina.

     
Gynecology Specialists  |  516 Innovation Drive, Suite 305, Chesapeake, VA 23320  |  Ph: (757) 312-8221 Fax:(757) 312-8382  |  Medical Disclaimer
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