Reproductive Health Access Project

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Contraceptive Pearl: IUDs for Teens

The United States has one of the highest teen pregnancy rates in the developed world. After decreases in the 90s, our teen pregnancy rates have begun to rise, with widening disparities between wealthy white and poor non-white groups.

The IUD is a long-term, reversible form of contraception. The copper and progestin IUDs cost less than oral contraceptives and 3-month injections over a five-year period. Nulliparous teens can use either IUD, and the IUD can be inserted at any point in the menstrual cycle. IUDs do not increase the risk of sexually transmitted infection or ectopic pregnancy. Teens who get a sexually transmitted infection can be treated with the IUD in place.

Here are a few reasons to consider IUDs for teens:

  • IUDs are safe, well tolerated, and highly effective.
  • After insertion, IUDs require no effort from users.
  • IUDs provide 7-12 years of contraception, allowing teens to complete their education before they start a family.

We appreciate your feedback! Please write us at pearls@reproductiveaccess.org with any questions, comments or additional resources to add to our list.

 

Helpful Resources

IUD Fact Sheet

Medical Eligibility for Initiating Contraception

ARCH Foundation: Patient Assistance Program for Mirena IUD

Paragard IUD Patient Assistance Program

 

Sources

Intrauterine device and adolescents. ACOG Committee Opinion No. 392. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Obstet Gynecol 2007; 110: 1493-5

Deans EI, Grimes DA. Intrauterine devices for adolescents: a systematic review. Contraception. 2009 Jun;79(6):418-23. Epub 2009 Feb 7. Review.

 

Pharma-free

The Reproductive Health Access Project does not accept funding from pharmaceutical companies. We do not promote specific brands of medication or contraception. The information in the Contraceptive Pearls is unbiased, based on science alone.