Teens and IUD

Whether you a teen considering contraceptive options or a parent wanting an option that is "user-proof" for your teen daughter, the IUD is a great choice.  The IUD is a T-shaped flexible plastic device that is inserted into the uterine cavity. There are three reasons why the IUD is such a good choice for teens:

  1. It is long-acting 
  2. It is reversible   
  3. It requires minimal action by the teen.          

In fact, because of these reasons, the IUD has become the first-line contraceptive option for teens as recommended by the American Congress of OB/GYN and the American Academy of Pediatrics.

There are two main types of IUD, hormonal and non-hormonal.  The hormonal IUD contains progestin and is good for 3-5 years, depending on which IUD is used, and usually makes the periods lighter.  The non-hormonal IUD contains copper and is good for 10 years.  All IUD's can easily be removed at any point in time after which fertility returns quickly.

IUD's are highly effective with a pregnancy rate of less than 1%.  Side effects and risks are rare but include possible vaginal discharge, or IUD shifting position.

In summary, in teen girls, the benefits of having an IUD far outweigh the risks.

Kirstie Cunningham, MD, FACOG President, Metro Health and Wellness, LLC

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