Will I gain weight? is a common concern for those beginning birth control. Weight gain is a potential adverse effect of more recent birth control methods like intrauterine devices (IUDs), but what about more conventional birth control methods like “the pill”?
The quick answer is yes, it is feasible. Let’s discuss the operation of IUDs, the potential weight gain they may cause, and what you may do to prevent it.
Mirena Iud Weight Gain
An OB/GYN will place an IUD, a tiny, T-shaped device, via your cervix, through your vagina, and into your uterus. Your ovaries are located right there, sort of like a gatekeeper, in between your fallopian tubes.
The majority of IUDs release progestins, which are reproductive hormones, to aid in preventing conception. The copper IUD (ParaGard), which inhibits conception because copper is harmful to sperm, is the only non-hormonal alternative available.
Some of the best birth control methods available now include IUDs. Less than 1% of IUD users will become pregnant while having the device put in. Many women adore IUDs for their convenience in addition to their remarkable efficacy rate. Depending on the brand, the IUD can stay in place after being implanted by your OB/GYN for a period of three to ten years.
Spotting, irregular periods, and frequently no periods at all after a year are typical side effects of hormonal IUDs. Contrary to hormonal IUDs, the copper IUD may cause higher menstrual bleeding.
How Might Iu Ds with Hormones Make You Gain Weight?
Currently, scientists are unsure exactly why some women experience weight gain while having an IUD implanted. This is because there isn’t any extensive research that aims to provide a solution.
If you do gain weight as a result of a hormonal IUD, it’s typically not an increase in body fat. Instead, progestin, the hormone used in IUDs, can increase water retention and bloating, symptoms similar to those of a menstrual cycle.
The weight on the scale may increase by around 5 pounds due to water retention, but this usually goes away after your body adjusts to the hormones, which usually takes about 3 months.
It’s important to note that both the hormonal IUD brands Mirena and Liletta list weight gain as a possible negative effect. 5.7% of participants in a clinical study reported that their weight rose while using Liletta.
Everyone is different, therefore even though users of all brands of hormonal IUDs have experienced weight gain in real life, you could not experience any problems with a particular brand despite the fact that others have.
Another thing to keep in mind is that just because a person puts on weight and has an IUD, it doesn’t necessarily follow that the IUD is to blame.
According to one study, a period of natural weight gain brought on by changes in nutrition, alcohol use, physical activity, and stress levels occurs throughout the reproductive years, which is also the time when IUD use is at its maximum.
Has anybody heard of “The Freshman 15”? Adulthood health issues like polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and life transitions like establishing a family or pursuing a job can lead to weight gain.
The Copper Iud May Lead to Weight Gain
What does the study say? The ParaGard package insert does not identify weight gain as an adverse effect. Sadly, there isn’t a straightforward response to that query either.
In research comparing weight increase caused by hormonal IUDs to that caused by copper IUDs, both groups had the same likelihood of experiencing comparable weight gain (about 10 pounds in 10 years). This appears to corroborate the theory that IUD users are typically gaining weight naturally for other causes.
What Methods of Birth Control Don’t Result in Weight Gain?
- You have a few options to choose from if you have an IUD and have observed unwelcome weight gain:
- Maintain the IUD and alter your way of life, such as your food and level of activity, to manage your weight.
- Change from a hormonal IUD to a copper IUD, or the other way around. If you gain weight with one kind of IUD, there’s a possibility that you won’t gain weight with another.
Alternately, try a whole other birth control method. You could try a different method of contraception rather than attempting another IUD. Recall that gaining weight is still a potential (though typically transient) negative effect of several hormonal birth control techniques, including the pill.
If you’re thinking about taking the pill, your best chance is to speak with your doctor about which course of action is best for your body, taking into account any health issues you may have or other medications you may be taking.
Ortho Tri-Cyclen, Yasmin, and Seasonique are examples of birth control pills that contain both progestin and estrogen, while Camila and Errin are examples of birth control pills that exclusively contain progestin.
Similar to progesterone, estrogen can lead to water retention in certain women, which can result in temporary weight gain. You may need to test out many brands before deciding which one works best for you, depending on how your body reacts to these hormones.
There are a few non-hormonal birth control methods, such as diaphragms, condoms, cervical caps, and natural family planning, but none of these are as successful at preventing conception as the copper IUD.