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Copper IUDs Dont Make Menstrual Cramps More Painful, Study Finds

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IUD CRAMPS
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Your IUD probably isn't making your period more painful, according to a new study in the journal Human Reproduction.

Researchers from Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg, found that women who use a copper intrauterine device don't have worse menstrual cramps than women who don't use the contraceptive device.

The observational study included more than 2,100 19-year-old women in three cohorts: one whose members were born in 1962, another in 1972 and another in 1982. Members of each group were examined every five years throughout the course of the study -- from 1981 (when the first group reached 19 years) to 2001 (when the last group did). Researchers kept tabs on the severity of pain of their menstrual cramps (dysmenorrhea), as well as their chosen contraception method.

Researchers did not find that using a copper IUD increased severity of pain during periods compared with using another kind of non-hormonal contraceptive device (like a diaphragm) or not using a contraceptive. On the other hand, researchers found that using a hormonal IUD, having given birth, or using a birth control pill seemed linked with less cramping pain while menstruating.

"Intrauterine devices and the contraceptive implant are the best reversible methods for preventing unintended pregnancy, rapid repeat pregnancy, and abortion in young women," wrote the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Earlier this year, a study in the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology showed that IUDs are also safe for teens to use.

What do you think about these new findings? Do you have an IUD? Do you feel like pain experienced during your period is better or worse than before you started using the IUD?

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