Here’s everything you need to know about having sex with an IUD, including how long to wait to have sex after an IUD insertion, and if you can feel an IUD during sex.
Many women choose to use an IUD (intrauterine device) to prevent unwanted pregnancy, since once an IUD is inserted it can last up to 10 years. This means no more worrying about forgetting a dose of birth control pills or risk a condom tearing.
What is an IUD, and are IUDs safe?
Before getting into having sex with an IUD, let’s first talk about what an IUD is and if using an IUD for pregnancy is safe.
An IUD is a little T-shaped device placed inside of your uterus to prevent pregnancy, and there are two types of IUDs: hormonal and non-hormonal.
A hormonal IUD contains a synthetic hormone called progestin that thins your uterine lining. By thinning your uterine lining, a fertilized egg would not be able to latch on to the uterine lining to receive nutrients and grow.
Progestin also thickens your cervical mucus, making it harder for sperm to move through it. Sometimes, it evens suppresses ovulation so that your ovaries don’t release any eggs to be fertilized.
Non-hormonal IUD, on the other hand, is made from copper to induce an inflammatory reaction in your uterus that kills sperm.
So are IUDs safe?
Generally, IUDs are safe to use for birth control, although there have been side effects reported. Irregardless of the IUD you choose, an IUD has a great protection against pregnancy. Hormonal IUDs only fail to prevent pregnancy up to 0.4% of the time, while copper IUDs have a slightly higher fail rate at 0.8% of the time.
That means that although no birth control is 100% foolproof, fewer than 1 in 100 women get pregnant each year when using an IUD as a birth control. An IUD also does not protect against sexually transmitted diseases or infections, so you would still want to use condoms or dental dams if you are concern about getting STIs.
Can an IUD affect your sex drive?
Generally, some women do not report a change in their sex drives with an IUD. This might be because an IUD does not contain hormones that affect your whole body, unlike many traditional birth control methods.
Even though the hormonal IUD contains progestogen, the releases are more localized in your uterus instead of affecting your whole body. Non-hormonal copper IUD does not release hormones at all.
Yet some women experience an increased libido after getting an IUD. This might be more about not having to worry about getting pregnant anymore, which can help increase libido and reduce stress around having sex. Alternatively, if you were taking a different birth control before that did affect your sexual desire because it contains hormones in them, then you will see an increase in your sex drive after you switch from that birth control method.
How long to wait to have sex after getting an IUD
You can have solo or partnered sex as soon as you want, but it will depend on how painful the IUD insertion process was for you.
For many women, getting an IUD inserted can be a really painful process and can result in some residual cramping. Sex might be the last thing on your mind right after an IUD insertion. So while you technically can have sex after an IUD placement (unless you had the IUD inserted within 48 hours of giving birth), you would want to wait until you feel physically and emotionally ready.
Can you have unprotected sex right after getting an IUD?
Depending on the type of IUD you are using, your IUD won’t necessarily be effective right after insertion. If you have a hormonal IUD, then where you are in your cycle when you got the IUD inserted, and the birth control method you switched from will affect when your IUD will become effective. As for non-hormonal copper IUD, it seems to be effective immediately after insertion.
If you want to be on the extra safe side, we recommend using another birth control method for the first seven days after getting an IUD inserted.
Can my partner finish in me with an IUD?
Yes, your partner can finish inside the vagina as the IUD is designed to stop you from getting pregnant when there is sperm present. That said, an IUD does not stop semen and sperm from going into your vagina. So if you want to prevent even that one percent chance of getting pregnant, then you might still want to ask your partner to wear a condom or finish outside of you.
If you are having sex with a new partner or multiple partners, then you might want to still use a condom during penis-in-vagina sex to protect against sexually transmitted infections.
Can you feel an IUD during sex?
You should not feel any difference having sex with an IUD, and you should not be feeling an IUD during sex. However, it might be different for your partner during penetration.
Since the IUD is inserted into your uterus and not your vagina, your partner should not feel the IUD during penis-in-vagina penetration or fingering. Your cervix is blocking access to the IUD insertion.
Although rare, some partners might feel the IUD strings during penis-in-vagina sex if the strings are too long. In this case, you can either go back to your ob-gyn and request for the strings to be adjusted or trimmed. Alternatively, you might prefer to just let the strings be as they typically soften and curl up around your cervix over time.
Is sex painful with an IUD?
Sex should not feel painful with an IUD. If you are feeling pain during sex with an IUD, or even bleeding during sex with an IUD, it might not be related to your IUD (for example, it might be due to endometriosis). However, it is still recommended that you bring this up with your ob-gyn as they could be signs of an infection or irritation.
Can an IUD Fall Out During Sex?
The IUD should not fall out during sex, no matter how rough or deep penetrating the sex is, since your IUD is in your uterus and not your vaginal canal. While it is rare for an IUD to fall out during sex or doing any other activities, it can happen due to two reasons: IUD expulsion and perforation. Thankfully, these two situations rarely happen, but it is good to know more about them.
IUD expulsion happens when an IUD is partially or fully coming out of the uterus. It might mean that your IUD is coming into your cervix, or even rarer, completely coming out of your cervix. IUD expulsion happens to 2 to 10 in 100 people (ranges from 2% to 10%) depending on the type of IUD used as well as a variety of other factors.
In those rare cases, it is more common for younger people, people with uterine abnormalities, or those who got an IUD placed shortly after giving birth. IUD expulsion also typically happens within the first two months of having your IUD inserted.
Uterine perforation is when a hole has been poked in the uterine wall, usually during the IUD insertion process. This might allow the IUD to escape. However uterine perforation is so rare than it only happens 1 in 1,000 people, according to ACOG.
Sex toys such as using a dildo or a vibrator won’t dislodge your IUD either, since most sex toys won’t latch onto slippery, thin strings.
An IUD falling out during sex or during exercise is rare, so don’t worry about having your IUD falling out while you are having sex! Schedule an examination with your ob-gyn if you have any reasons to believe that your IUD isn’t where it is supposed to be.