I got an IUD yesterday and it was easily the worst pain I’ve felt in my life.
Let me preface by saying that IUDs are one of the better forms of birth control ever, so totally worth it, and if you have decent insurance it should be free or low cost (insurance companies prefer shelling out IUD costs to paying for maternity care). I think my body will adjust fine to mine, we’ll see how it goes…point being, if you’re considering getting an IUD, do it, and don’t let this scare you away. The major pain lasted less than five minutes, and the rest of the discomfort less than 30.
Let me also preface this by saying this post isn’t sexual or book related, and it’s kinda medical/icky, so some of y’alls may wanna skip it.
And finally, third preface, this is what it felt like for me to get an IUD. Everyone’s different.
Okay! Prefacing complete. So, holy fucking balls. The pain.
I’ve never had kids, which makes it worse because my cervix has never been dilated. My first warning about the pain came from the nurse, who asked me if I’d taken ibuprofen before coming.
“Do you want some?”
“Do you think I need it?”
She gave me a small smile that said ‘I know something you don’t know’ and handed me three pills.
The doctor started by asking me if I’d Googled IUD information. I told her I hadn’t really looked much into things, besides looking up the meds she’d prescribed for me to take the night before. She ranted a bit about people using the internet to self-diagnose, and how pharm companies pay websites to have certain diseases listed higher than others, etc. Meanwhile, I was thinking, ‘It’s quite nice of you, making me feel comfortable before you stick your fingers in my cunt.’ Kinda like doctoral-foreplay. Classy.
Next, she had me spread ‘em, and I stared at the ceiling. There was a picture, a print of a landscape painting, taped on the ceiling and I thought that was considerate. It was also very small, half the size of a sheet of paper, and a good six feet above my head. So then I thought about how it was considerate, but really, they could’ve done a better job. It’s a fairly large clinic. I’m sure they’re able to print at least legal-size.
Back to reality with the words: “Okay, you’re going to feel a little pinch.”
Second pain warning, major fucking understatement, and I dropped my first F-bomb. It hurt like hell. Sharp, biting, horrible. Like the worst menstrual cramp ever, except in a slightly different location.
“And the next pinch will be a little worse.”
“Wait, did you just say worse?”
“Yep. Here we go…”
To her credit, she worked quick, spoke quick, and I’m glad she gave me the warnings a millisecond before she gave the pain. If I’d had time to think it through I don’t know if I would’ve gone ahead with it.
The next “pinch” was balls-out-insane. I felt as if someone was squeezing my uterus like it was a wet towel.
Second, third, and fourth F-bombs followed, along with a “Holy shit!”
“So the next part,” she continued, “is going to last thirty seconds.”
“I’ll count so you know how much longer.”
“I’m really glad I hadn’t Googled this,” I moaned.
Longest. Thirty. Seconds. Ever. She even counted fast, though she did the thing where you put “one thousand” in between the numbers to make yourself slow down. But since she was speaking rapidly I felt like she was rooting for the pain to be over. Any ladies in Austin need an OB/GYN? I’d recommend her, shoot me a message.
The pain didn’t stop after the thirty seconds, but it subsided fairly quickly. I laid back on the table, taking deep breaths, and wondering if I was going to faint when I sat up.
A few minutes of reclined recovery later, the pain was mostly gone, though there was cramping. The walk home helped, I think, and cramps were gone within thirty minutes.
I felt light-headed and out of sorts for about an hour (but I get faint pretty easily, especially with regards to getting stitches, or having foreign objects lodged into my uterus. You know, those kinda things).
Every lady is different. Some people have loads of pain, others almost none, others need multiple appointments to finally get the sucker in place–I know this because now I’ve Googled it. To sum up, for me:
- Total time for insertion: less than 5 minutes.
- Major pain: less than 5 minutes.
- Minor cramping/discomfort: less than 30 minutes.
- Light-headedness: less than 60 minutes.
- Some women elect to take a day or two off work, apparently. I feel fine, I’m exercising today, I went out to dinner and drinks with friends last night, and have noticed no need to take it easy, beyond that hour of recovery.
Now, I don’t have to freak out when a condom breaks. If I have a long term partner, we can fuck, condom free. IUDs last five years (well, mine will–ParaGard lasts even longer). Mirena, the type I have, will potentially make my periods go away completely which would be so freaking awesome.
I’m happy I did it, but damn, I do not look forward to doing it again.