A Mom's Guide to Birth Control


Best if: You're breastfeeding; You don't want to get pregnant tomorrow; You've found your perfect family size

How it works: You've got two options: The ParaGard copper IUD and Mirena, a hormone-based IUD. Both are small T-shaped devices your doctor inserts inside your uterus. ParaGard releases copper, which inhibits sperm movement and implantation, while Mirena secretes progestin. ParaGard lasts for 10 years, Mirena for five.

Perks: It's super convenient, which may be why IUDs are the top choice of contraception in the world. Mirena may decrease your flow (while ParaGard may increase it).

Drawbacks: You could have break-through bleeding in the first few months. IUDs aren't recommended for women with a history of ectopic pregnancy or who have pelvic inflammatory disease.

Fertility returns 2 months post-removal.

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