THE IUS – AKA THE
A small coil with local action.
WORKS FOR UP TO EIGHT YEARS
The intrauterine system (IUS) is a small, soft, T-shaped device with a reservoir containing a progestogen hormone that is placed in your womb by your doctor or nurse. It slowly releases the hormone, which thins the lining of your womb and thickens cervical mucus, making it harder for sperm to get through. There are three types of IUS with different amount of hormones. Discuss with your healthcare professional which best suits your needs.
A couple of consultations with your doctor or nurse is about all that's needed. Once you've discussed it, and decided that it's the right method for you, the IUS can be fitted. It works continuously for up to 3, 5 or 8 years with no daily or weekly routine to remember. Should you decide that you no longer want to have the IUS, it can be removed at any time by a healthcare professional, and its effects will wear off quickly, allowing you to return to your normal fertility level. As no contraception method is for everyone, it's important to discuss the hormonal coil with a healthcare pro-fessional first.
The IUS does not protect against sexually transmitted infections.
HOW IT MEASURES UP
Typical use means how well the method works in real life and perfect use means how well a method works under 'perfect' or ideal conditions for example when there is no user error at any time.
Yes. A progestogen hormone is released from the IUS into the womb where it acts mainly locally. There are three types of IUS with different amount of hormones. Discuss with your healthcare professional which best suits your needs.
EASE OF USE
The IUS must be fitted by a doctor or nurse, but once it is correctly placed it is effective for up 8 years, depending on the type you select. If you want to stop using the IUS, a doctor or nurse can remove it.
Periods may become lighter or less frequent, with some women experiencing no periods at all. However, spotting and irregular bleeding can also be common in the first 6 months of use.
NEED ADVICE? SPEAK TO YOUR HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONAL
Seek out an appointment with your doctor or nurse for further support that meets your needs.
KNOW YOUR OPTIONS
The Hormonal Coil is a small, soft T-shaped plastic frame that releases low levels of a progestin hormone for up to 3 to 8 years. It is given with a prescription and placed in your womb by a doctor or nurse.
The Copper Coil is a small, T-shaped plastic frame that has a copper wire. it is given with a prescription and placed in your womb by a doctor or nurse, where it prevents pregnancy for up to 5 to 10 years.
A small, flexible silicone rod that releases hormones for up to 3 years. It is given with a prescription and placed under the skin of your upper arm by a doctor or nurse.
Combined Oral Contraceptive Pill (COCP)
COCPs are tablets that may have to be taken every day, releasing the hormone progestogen and oestrogen to prevent pregnancy. They are often referred to as the pill and you will need a prescription from your healthcare professional for these.
An injection containing a hormone that is given with a prescription and administered by a doctor or nurse every 12-13 weeks.
A small, thin, skin-coloured plastic square that sticks to the skin and releases hormones. It is given with a prescription and can be self-administered once a week.
A silicone cup placed in the vagina that prevents sperm from reaching the womb. Your doctor or nurse will normally conduct an initial fitting to make sure you have the correct size.
A small, flexible ring that is self-administered with a prescription and placed in the vagina, where it releases hormones for 3 weeks.
An internal condom placed in the vagina that stops sperm from reaching the vagina whilst also helping protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs). It is self-administered and bought over the counter.
A sheath placed over the erect penis to stop sperm from reaching the vagina whilst also helping protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs). It is self-administered and bought over the counter.
Progestogen-only Pill (POP)
POPs are tablets which have to be taken every day at the same time with no break between packs. These pills only contain a progestogen hormone and so they can be taken by women for whom oestrogen-containing options are not suitable. They are also known as the mini-pill and you will need a prescription from your healthcare professional for these..
Self-directed methods of avoiding pregnancy that include menstrual cycle tracking and body temperature measurements to identify fertile days.
Spermicides are Creams, films, foams, gels and suppositories that contain chemicals to stop or kill sperm. These are bought over the counter and are self-administered.
Also known as ‘The pull-out method’, this self-directed method involves withdrawing the penis prior to ejaculation to avoid pregnancy.
A medical procedure performed by a doctor or nurse that blocks the fallopian tubes so the egg cannot travel down the tubes to meet the sperm.