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Tell me about the coil, are there different types and does it have any side affects? Does it hurt etc

(18 Posts)
ohnelly Thu 30-Jun-11 12:01:25

Hi all, I am currently on the pill (cerazette) but my periods are all over the place and Im not really interested in sex tbh. I am considering having the coil, but don't really know anything about it, so would appreciate some advice. I have a few questions!
Are they different types? If so what are they?
Does it hurt to have it put in, and how do they actually do it?
Is it 100% reliable?
Any side affects?
How long does it last?

I am 35 with 2 dc's and not planning any more, but wouldn't rule it out. Thanks smile

alarkaspree Thu 30-Jun-11 12:08:05

There are two different types - the copper coil, which has no hormones, and the mirena, which does have hormones but in a much lower dose than the pill.

I have the copper coil and love it. It does hurt, or at least feel uncomfortable, when it's inserted - like a combination of a smear test and a bad period pain ime. But once it's in you can't feel it at all.

The copper coil does cause some people to have heavier periods, and the mirena makes most people's periods lighter. But some people still have problems with the hormones in the mirena.

The copper coil can be left in for 10 years, I think.

No form of contraception is 100% reliable.

Personally I'd try the copper coil first and switch to the mirena if heavy periods proved to be a big problem for you.

PersonalClown Thu 30-Jun-11 12:08:14

AFAIK There are 2 versions, copper and mirena.
The mirena has hormones in it. They say they stay localised but I know a fair few women that have had major problems with it.
The plus side is that it can reduce or even stop your periods.

Copper has absolutely no hormones at all (godsend in my view). It can make your periods slightly heavier or longer.

It takes about 10 mins to have one put in. Doesn't hurt apart from some cramping afterwards and you forget it soon enough.
No contraception is 100% but as long as it's inserted properly, you get you 98% ish.
They last about 5 years but can be taken out at anytime by a professional.

I have the copper. Yay! No hormones so less migraines, less PMT etc. Slight cramps when due on or ovulating and a slightly heavier flow but only for 3 days.

alarkaspree Thu 30-Jun-11 12:09:06

Sorry - missed how they put it in. They put a tool up through your cervix. I think it's not recommended for women who haven't had children already for this reason.

HattiFattner Thu 30-Jun-11 12:12:10

i have mirena...have had it for 8 months. Its a hormone impregnated coil.

I hope to have it removed in the next 3 or 4 months as it has not helped the condition it was supposed to help (heavy periods) and the side effects have been unpleasant (2 infections, weight gain, sore boobs, depression, spots) . However, 3 of my friends have it and think its the best thing since sliced bread. no periods!

I had mine fitted in the gyn's office - it was not pain free for me, but my friend didn't realise it was done until it was all over. Another had hers fitted under a general anaesthetic.

They open your cervix slightly and insert a thin tube that contains the "coil" - which I believe is more like a 7. It has two strings and as I understand it, its like a ship in a bottle - they pull the string and the 7 opens up.

Yes, super reliable

Lasts 5 years.

OTheHugeManatee Thu 30-Jun-11 12:15:01

I have a copper coil and love it.

Downsides: it was uncomfortable getting it installed, and I felt crampy and nauseous for a few hours afterwards. Plus it does make my periods a bit heavier - I get a 4-day period, followed by a day off, followed by a 1-2 day 'sequel', which is a bit annoying.

But on the plus side I now don't need to take hormonal contraceptives, which always make me go completely wibble. I don't have to faff about with condoms or other barrier thingies, which both of us hate, and it's pretty reliable.

cazzybabs Thu 30-Jun-11 12:17:56

I had the Mirena - it was uncomfortable getting it fitted but no way as had as I imagined! The best bit is no periods; the worst is some bleeding (very mild) for a few hours randomly and spots.

wonderfultykes Thu 30-Jun-11 12:19:49

I had a mirena. It didn't help heavy periods, but they didn't get any worse either. came out. I have no idea when it did, nor how long I was unprotected without it, must have come out with a normal heavy bleed. Beat that - scary stuff. You are supposed to check threads are there after each bleed - and I recommend you do so!

Furball Thu 30-Jun-11 12:46:59

I'm on my 3rd mirena and love it

yes fitting it is uncomfortable and it's not painful more of a twinge, but short term pain = long term gain ie no periods and not had any for 10 years! no pmt no nothing.

mirena is like marmite - you do either love it or hate it. But personally I can't recommend it enough

allegrageller Thu 30-Jun-11 12:49:05

furball have you always been able tolerate hormonal contraception? I suffer from appalling pms in 'natural' cycles. Doctors have advised a Mirena, but having read that some women actually suffer even more with it, I'm really not sure what to do.

ohnelly Thu 30-Jun-11 12:56:01

Thanks for replies, sounds painful sad though I'm sure it can't be that bad. I think the hormone free one might be better for me, as another reason I want to come off the pill is I have brown marks on my face which got worse with each pregnancy, and I think this is related to hormones.
Still not sure though if I will be brave enough to go through with it. Any more advice welcome!
wonderfultykes what are the threads? Like on a tampon so you know it's still there?

OTheHugeManatee Thu 30-Jun-11 13:36:08

Seriously it's not that painful. No worse than a half-day of period pain IME. And the gains are soooooo worth it. Just don't plan on cycling home after getting it fitted, like I did hmm

I ended up walking 10 minutes from the clinic to the nearest pub, drinking two double brandies in quick succession and phoning DP at work to say "DO YOU KNOW WHAT I JUST WENT THROUGH FOR YOU???? DO YOU???? DO YOU????!!!???


Furball Thu 30-Jun-11 15:46:53

allegrapher - I don't know. I was on the pill for about 10 years which was fine. But I can't take it anymore due to a medical condition.

Like I said the mirena for me is great. there seems to be no middle ground with it, you either get on with it or you don't.

Unfortunately there is only one way to find out as it is different for everyone.

wonderfultykes Thu 30-Jun-11 19:37:46

yes it has one or 2 little fine strings attached to base that are cut quite short outside cervix - (string doens't dangle like with tampon), but mine was really quite short so tricky to check...and oops I never knew it had gone till routine checkup...followed very swiftly by ultrasound, to check what had gone just wasn't there any more! scary.

suzi2 Thu 30-Jun-11 22:20:29

I had a mirena put in a couple of months ago. It was more uncomfortable than out and out painful going in - sort of like labour pains, all cervical and weird but not unbearable. Much better than I thought. I cramped badly for a week or so afterwards and was sort of aware of it being there (like that 'full' early pregnancy feeling). I had on and off serious cramps, then a normalish period for 10 days, and then it all settled....

... until the serious cramping for next period started and my body expelled it! Was aware of it jabbing me on the way out lol.

Not sure how I feel about it. I feel it could have worked if my body settled with it but not sure I could trust another to not let me down.

suzi2 Thu 30-Jun-11 22:21:01

Oh and I can't take anything estrogen based but seem to be OK with progesterone.

bubaluchy Fri 01-Jul-11 19:29:54

The copper coil was awful for me, I could feel it inside me at all times and my periods were very heavy, my uterus was contracting around it and trying to reject it, (worst form of contra I've ever used)

poppymum11 Sat 02-Jul-11 22:38:28

I have just had the merina coil put in a couple weeks ago and was panicking something awful about how painful it was going to be...specially after having a dc I don't think I could cope with anymore trauma downstairs however was rather shocked when they said they put it in! Nothing to worry about no more worse than a smear test! I have had no cramping no spotting or bleeding and have almost completely forgotten that its in...

Everyone is different and I guess you have to think about what works best for you! You can always try it and if it doesn't work out get it removed! I suffered from really bad pmt/heavy bleeding etc so hopefully having the coil will improve far so good!

I read alot of pros/cons before hand but don't let that put you off you have to try for yourself to know whats best!!

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