Can You Have Sex Before Getting an IUD?

IUDs are small, T-shaped pieces of plastic that stay in your uterus to prevent pregnancy. They’re 99% effective when inserted correctly. They work by blocking sperm and thickening the mucus lining of your cervix and uterus.

Your partner might feel your IUD’s strings during penetrative sex, but it shouldn’t be painful or uncomfortable.

Waiting for 24 hours

Before getting an IUD, you should prepare for your appointment by preparing comfortable clothes and packing a small snack. You should also bring a water bottle and a friend or partner to drive you home afterward. This way, you can relax while you wait for your appointment.

During the IUD insertion process, your healthcare provider will use a tool to hold your cervix steady and insert the device. This will cause cramping that feels like a strong menstrual period, but it won’t last long. After the procedure, you can go back to your normal activities — but don’t have any vaginal sex for 24 hours afterward.

IUDs are hormone-free birth control options that prevent pregnancy by releasing copper ions into your uterus, making the environment hostile for sperm and eggs and impairing implantation. They also thin out the inner lining of your uterus, resulting in lighter periods (or sometimes no period at all). They do not protect against sexually transmitted infections or HIV/AIDS.

Nonhormonal IUDs like the ParaGard and levonorgestrel-releasing IUDs start preventing pregnancy as soon as they’re inserted. But hormonal IUDs, such as the Mirena and Liletta, need to be in place for seven days before they become effective. To ensure the IUD is in the right place, a woman can feel for the strings, which are about the length of your finger. The doctor can also check the IUD’s position with a simple procedure.

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Waiting for your period

IUDs are amazing contraceptives because they prevent pregnancy without having to remember to take a pill (like the pill) or worry about getting an infection from vaginal sex (like an IUD). They also last for years, and don’t decrease your libido. But many women wonder whether they can have sex while using an IUD—especially penetrative sex.

The insertion of an IUD is a relatively quick and painless procedure. Most healthcare professionals who offer IUDs will allow you to use the same oral numbing medications as a gynecological exam, so it shouldn’t hurt too much. You might feel some cramping, but it won’t last long. “It feels like a really bad cramp, and then it mellows out,” Streicher tells Insider.

After an IUD is inserted, you might have some spotting or cramping for about a week. This is because the insertion process requires doctors to pass instruments through your vagina, cervix, and into your uterus, disturbing the protective mucous lining of these organs.

After the first week, your period should start to settle into a regular pattern. However, if you experience pain or heavy bleeding, it is important to contact the doctor who inserted your IUD. You might have a problem with your IUD, or you could be pregnant. They will examine you and administer a pregnancy test to confirm that you are not pregnant.

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Waiting for a week

IUDs are t-shaped devices that prevent sperm from reaching an egg and stopping an embryo from implanting in your uterus. They are made of a soft plastic, and they can be inserted into the uterus during an office visit. Depending on what type of IUD you have, you may experience cramping and mild bleeding during the procedure.

Most healthcare professionals will ask about your birth control history before inserting an IUD. This helps them decide whether an IUD is a good fit for you, and it also gives them a chance to assess your risk for pregnancy. Typically, an IUD can be placed after unprotected sex, though it is important to use a backup method of birth control while you wait for the IUD to fully take effect.

While it is rare, sex can dislodge an IUD or cause it to fall out of your uterus (known as expulsion). However, it’s highly unlikely that the IUD would move because of penetrative sex, such as with a penis or sex toy, because the IUD sits in the neck of the womb, not the vagina or cervix.

You should check your IUD’s strings once a month to make sure it is still in place. The string is similar in size and thickness to floss, and you can feel it if you know where to look for it. If the string feels shorter or longer than usual, call your doctor right away and use a backup method of birth control.

Waiting for a month

The first time you get an IUD, it is important to abstain from sex for 24 hours after the doctor inserts it. This is because the IUD insertion process requires passing tools through your vagina, cervix, and into your uterus, which disturbs the protective mucous lining. If this lining gets infected, it can lead to serious pelvic inflammatory disease. During this time, you should also use a barrier method of birth control (such as condoms) to protect yourself against pregnancy.

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The IUD is an increasingly popular form of contraception because it’s more than 99% effective, safe, and long-acting. It’s also reversible, which means it can be removed at any point. However, many women have questions about how to prepare for an IUD insertion. Insider asked three gynecologists for their expert advice.

The type of IUD you choose and the timing of its insertion affects whether or when it becomes effective against pregnancy. For example, copper IUDs like Paragard begin preventing pregnancy immediately, while hormonal IUDs such as Mirena, Liletta, Skyla, and Kyleena become effective seven days after insertion. In either case, it’s a good idea to use backup methods of birth control until you can visit your doctor and have your IUD inserted properly. It’s also a good idea to periodically check for the strings attached to your IUD by feeling them in your vagina.

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