My Birth Control Journey/Paraguard {Product review}

**I am definitely not a medical professional. This article is based on my personal experience. As always, please talk to your doctor before making any medical decisions for yourself**

“The best way to reduce the risk of unintended pregnancy among women who are sexually active is to use effective birth control correctly and consistently……..”

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BK#1 was conceived with combined oral contraceptive. That “typical failure rate of 9%”, yeah that is me. I took my pill daily, and had alarm set on my phone so even if I was busy, I couldn’t forget. She is a blessing, we adore her, and in no way is she an “oops”, “accident” or many other things I have heard. The pill simply didn’t work for me.

After she was born I went on a progestin only pill (because I was nursing BK#1) AND we used condoms!

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8 months later I found out I was pregnant with BK#2!! >>> Insert chaos here<<<<

Okay CDC I got you…I am the 9% and apparently in the 18% also?!?!

Our babies are our WORLD and we wouldn’t have it any other way!! Birth control, in general, just infuriates me and scares me. Why spend all this money, if planning your life for your children doesn’t work! God obviously wanted these babies, and they better become lawyers or the president or something.

For those who have a very hard time TTC, or can’t I am truly sorry. This post is not to make you feel bad, but to make woman aware of the stats, and the reality of birth control failure.

After BK#2 was born we made the decision that I would get an IUD. We were not ready to get anything permanent, and make the decision to be done having babies, but SOMETHING had to be done! My body is still recovering 6 months later. A pregnancy a year is not easy on the body, at all. Doctors say it takes a woman’s body 18 months to completely heal…..well BK#1 and BK#2 are only 17 months apart. So, even though I was scared of getting an IUD because of the risk factors, I chose to get one for my health, and sanity!

After months of talking with my  DH, doctor,  and midwife, we decided that I would get a Paragard.BurritoBuzz Paragard2

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Pros: Its more than 99% effective! I like those odds a little better. The string is a cotton string unlike most IUD’s. It is still stiff at first, but it does soften up after a few weeks. Even though it caused a little discomfort at first with my husband, after a week or so it was fine! It lasts for 10 years.  No more alarms going off to take my pill, no more counting days and checking the calendar to see if I missed a day, or if the pack is right, and no more taking pills!!!! YES PLEASE.

There are no hormones, because it is a copper device. >>> No weight gain, mood swings, etc. that come along with a hormone based birth control.

I have had no spotting, or periods since the initial spotting after insertion. I don’t know if that is due to still breastfeeding, or the IUD.

I had no “adjustment time”. No cramping or pain later. BUrritoBuzz Paragard.png

6 months after being pregnant, and I’m not pregnant!!!!!!

My insurance paid for it in FULL! We don’t have that great of insurance either, so be sure to contact them first!

Cons: It hurt like you wouldn’t believe getting it put in! I had two natural births , and I was crying while it was getting put in, I almost passed out, I puked after she was done, and I sat in the office for 30 minutes after it was done to calm down so I could leave.

There are a lot of horror stories about IUD implanting in the uterus etc., but never did I read anything about how I felt that day.

When you get it put in after birth you have to wait a month or so. I scheduled my insertion promptly after delivery, and my midwife and OBGYN insured me that it would be super easy to insert, because of just delivering a huge baby.

IT MIGHT HAVE BEEN EASY FOR THEM!

Honestly, I felt bad for my doctor. I was a mess, but I couldn’t help it! When they dilated my cervix and inserted it I could have swore she was trying to rip out my uterus.

I suggest asking to be numbed, and some valium if you are getting it!

There are the horror stories of IUDs, but that comes with anything. There are even  horror stories for the pill. Its really how you take care of yourself, and making sure you go for your regular checks, and are checking yourself!

The pain of insertion is the only bad thing I have to say about Paragard!

Would I do it again?  Maybe? If they could drug me up, or knock me out! I think its worth it for 10 years.

Be sure to talk about all of your options with your doctor, and educate yourself before putting anything into your body! I hope my experiences can help you!!

~Amanda~

 

 

 

 

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Update: Nexplanon Review

I’ve always been an advocate of women taking charge of their own bodies, which includes deciding when you want to become pregnant. For many years I was on an estrogen pill. After some time, I went on the mini-pill (progesterone) and thought it worked just fine. Minimal side-effects.
After having my LO, my brain was scattered. I knew that taking a pill every day was going to be more difficult. After doing some research, I elected to have Nexplanon put in. Nexplanon is a small, flexible rod inserted in the inside of your underarm by a healthcare professional. It is 99% effective, and has many of the same possible side-effects of a typical combination pill. The rod is good for 3 years, and most insurance companies cover the expensive cost (which ranges from $700-$900 for the rod, and $300 for each minor surgery.)
Insertion of the Nexplanon was quick, and mostly painless. My physician’s assistant numbed the area, and inserted Nexplanon with a small instrument. She then felt to make sure it was in the proper location, and bandaged it up. There was some soreness, and it bruised pretty badly.FullSizeRender

I expected to have some irregular bleeding, but that ended up being a huge understatement. I had irregular and frequent bleeding nearly every day for about 4 months, when I finally elected to have the rod removed. After talking with a nurse practitioner, she advised that this happens with about 1 in 5 that have the Nexplanon put in. Crazy. So, not only was I dealing with insane postpartum hormones, but then this evil birth control rod of death just compounded everything tenfold.

The removal of the Nexplanon was bad. I mean, really bad. First, my nurse practitioner almost cut into my arm without numbing it. In reality, I would have been fine. I just gave birth to a human. But HELLO, let’s not. A nurse quickly stopped her, and she promptly numbed the area. Nexplanon had encapsulated in my arm, so she had to cut way more than what is typical, and it took nearly a half hour. I almost needed stitches (and in retrospect, probably should have had a few.) It’s been several months since the removal now, and I have a scar and some soreness in that spot still.

A quick Google search results in plenty of unhappy consumers that also elected to have Nexplanon removed.

I happily rejoined the birth control pill ranks. 
**UPDATE: it’s been almost half a year since I had the Nexplanon removed. I have a half inch scar, raised above the skin, as well as fairly painful scar tissue. Hoping both the scar and pain will fade, but it really may take some time.**

-Katie