September 2011 Moms

ParaGard for BC? Pros/Cons...

Anyone out there have experience with ParaGard for BC?  Would appreciate some insight on all the pros/cons

I've only ever used BC Pill or condoms in the past.... have always been nervous at the idea of an IUD, because it sounds a little scary....but then again, I really hate the idea of having to use hormonal BC...didn't necessarily have a bad reaction to it or anything (maybe just a decrease in drive), but I just don't like the idea of manipulating my body and cycle with hormones ... I plan on breastfeeding for up to a year also (ideally a year), so that's another reason.... and both H and I hate condoms..

We don't want to even think about planning a second LO for at least a couple to a few years. So we need high effectiveness... Just FYI, this LO was a surprise for us (though a welcome surprise as we were anticipating TTC in the near future anyway)...but we were using condoms and very rarely the pull-out method as well at the time....

The ParaGard seems like a good option to meet all these needs, but I know there's got to be some cons out there too, so I'd love to hear it all....Effectiveness, pain, discomfort, any bad side effects, complications, or even positive experiences... everything!...all advice welcome!

Thank you!!


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Re: ParaGard for BC? Pros/Cons...

  • I didn't have paraguard but I did have mirena.. that said I wanted paraguard due to being hormone red but my ob told me he got a lot more complaints with paraguard than mirena.. paraguard has been know to cause pretty bad cramping and heavier periods. Lorena causes light periods.. honestly you don't feel it. There's strings like fishing wire they leave to remove it and if your H feels them thy an cut them shorter. Only thing is mirena is 5 years and para is 10 allow mirena has very minimal hormones which do not affect your breastfeeding. Its so minimal the stay within the ute to help with the bleeding from periods. Even insertin didn't hurt had minor cramps that day and you don't feel it sitting inside you.. I do think I gained weight from it but there's no proof. I only had mirena for tree months.. my friend has paraguard and doesn't seem to have any complaints though.. its up to you and that's really what my ob told me as well. He said both were great choices.

    If you google iud side effects you'll get tons. Everyone is different as well some have no reaction others have tons.. over all the iud worked as it should and gave me no issues.. it lightened my period a ton but wasn't in long enough to see if I would stop it (mirenas been known to stop periods too)

    Also I got the iud in plans on waiting to ttc for a while well we decided earlier so I removed it myself and had no issues getting pregnancy took us three ccles. Took us three cycles with DD. As well and I didn't use any BC before she was concieved.. if that helps at all.
  • I plan to get one after this LO is born. I was told by my OB to expect heavier periods, but I only get a 2-3 day very light period to begin with, so I didn't think that was so awful. I admittedly have done little research. I will BF, and despised the mini pill, so I won't consider that again, and in general, I hate hormonal BC. I will give it a try, and if I can't deal with it, I'll have it removed and come up with a new plan.
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  • Make sure your insurance/bank account will cover it. It's expensive!
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  • I had paraguard about a year ago after my son was born in April.  My pp bleeding had stopped, had it put in about 8 wks or so pp.  I chose ParaGuard bc I wanted effectiveness and no hormones.  Let me tell you, it was horrible!  Heavy bleeding and cramps.  We are talking heavy heavy bleeding.  Worse then my pp bleeding.  It went on like this for about 3 months.  I was wearing a pad AND a tampon and changing them every hour or so.  It got to the point that the bleeding was interfering with life.  I had it taken out. 
  • I really considered the paraguard, becasue I don't react well to hormonal BC.  My OB still strongly recommended the mirena.  He said the hormones were a fraction of what you get from low dose pills, and he finds patients are overall more happy with mirena.  I really liked it and will get another after this baby.

    Insertion was not a great experience for me. It really hurt. I have a benign cyst near my cervix that complicated the procedure though.  I had heavy cramping that day.  I then had bleeding for about a week followed by daily light spotting for a month or two.  After that I had nothing for months. Right before I had it taken out and shortly after I weaned DS, I began to have very light periods.  DH never complained about the strings, though mine did travel back up into the cervix.  At that time the dr ordered an u/s and said everything was properly in place it just makes removal a tad more tricky.  However, the removal was far easier than insertion.  It sounds like I had all these issues, but actually they were really minor in the grand scheme of things.  I had months of not thinking about birth control, no side effects, etc.  I am just trying to paint a true picture of my experience with an IUD.

    ETA:  My sister has the mirena as well, and she has been really happy with it.  She is just finishing her 5 years and has plans to get another.   

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  • I had the Paragard and really liked it. My only side effects were a longer/heavier period for the first year. It eventually started getting a little lighter but would consistently last 5-6 days.

    I might consider getting another one when we are done having kids so that my DH doesn't have to get snipped but we haven't really discussed it yet.

    Insertion and removal were very slightly uncomfortable but nothing I couldn't handle with some Tylenol.

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  • If I were to get BC after this LO it would definitely be Paraguard. I was on Depo for awhile and although it was awesome to only have to have a shot every 3 months it was wrecking havoc on my body (no sex drive, bleeding everyday, etc). I told myself to never go back to anything hormonal. I don't have experience with Parguard but based on what you are concerned about OP, I'd also go with this.
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  • This, but I had for over a year:

    image jjazwinski:
    I had paraguard about a year ago after my son was born in April.  My pp bleeding had stopped, had it put in about 8 wks or so pp.  I chose ParaGuard bc I wanted effectiveness and no hormones.  Let me tell you, it was horrible!  Heavy bleeding and cramps.  We are talking heavy heavy bleeding.  Worse then my pp bleeding.  It went on like this for about 3 months.  I was wearing a pad AND a tampon and changing them every hour or so.  It got to the point that the bleeding was interfering with life.  I had it taken out. 

    I know lots of girls who hav e Mirena and love it.  I even know a girl who got her tubes tied and still got Mirena so she could get the benefits of the light periods.

  • I had ParaGard and loved it. I can't take the BC pill because it messes with my Migraines too much (all the hormones) and I didn't want to make my body think it was pregnant with Mirena. It did make my periods  a little heavier but not much, I already have heavy periods and I didn't notice much change in the cramping, i get bad cramps too. For me it was a win win because I didn't mess with my head and a little extra bleeding once a month was totally worth it.
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  • Thank you for the responses everyone!

    I had noticed Mirena too but wasn't sure about it because of the hormones.... but I will do some more research on it and also be talking to my OB about the different options

    Appreciate it!


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    Though we're strangers 'til now, we're choosing the path between the stars;
    I'll leave my love between the stars.
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