Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Mirena IUD- What they DIDN'T tell me!

This post is for all those moms out there who are considering getting the Mirena IUD and want to hear someone's opinion on the device.

After the birth of my third child I knew I wanted to take a break for awhile (like 3-4 years) before we had number 4 (yes, we are crazy..and yes, we want to have a big family)! I considered many different forms of birth control, and was very stressed over it as well.  I had used birth control pills before I had children, and found that I was extremely sensitive to them (especially those containing estrogen).  I switched to pills that were progesterone only, and while they were better, I still had unwanted symptoms: strong cramps, depression with hormone changes, anxiety.  I decided later after the birth of my second child that my husband and I would just use condoms, and that worked great for us until we decided to try for number three.  Before I could say "fertile," we were pregnant with number three! Hooray.  So, I can not say what posessed me to decided to try a new form of birth control.  I guess I just wanted the ease of an IUD, and I had read all about Mirena and loved what I heard.  I also asked around and had it highly recommended.  One very close friend even told me that she didn't notice any side effects, and after about 8 months she didn't even get periods anymore.

I decided to give it a try in August 2010.  The implantation procedure was very fast and pretty painless-not any worse than a pap-smear.  I had a lot of spotting right away, and knew that was common, but six months later there were many side effects I was having that were NOT normal (at least not from what I had read):
  • Complete loss of breast milk! (I was told by doctors that this would not happen!) Within weeks I lost all of my milk, which was extremely sad (and expensive) since my baby was only 3.5 months old and I had planned to breast feed for 1 year!
  • Spotting multiple times a month (I couldn't even keep track of periods)
  • Severe mood swings with hormone changes (depression, anxiety, severe 'bitchiness')
  • Fat around my mid-section that would not go away with dieting and excercise for 6 months (eventhough the rest of me was getting skinny)
  • Facial acne like I have NEVER had in my life (even in my teens I had pretty clear skin)
Now in March, I finally decided to have it removed.  My OBGYN told me that I should really wait a year for symptoms to level out, but seriously...who could live a year with the symptoms I was having!  I just got it taken out yesterday, and I am hoping that I will soon be back to 'normal.' I will post updates soon and let you know how it is going.

*Please understand that this is just MY experience with Mirena.  I wish I had read more about people's personal experiences with the IUD before I got it.  I feel like the brochure did not cover any of the symptoms I was having, and it would have been nice to have a wider range of opinions.  After all, is the Mirena brochure really going to tell you actual opinions of their users (especially if they are negative)?

Here are some links to more opinions on Mirena:

I want to hear from you.  Did you have problems with the Mirena IUD? Do you love it? Want to know more about my experience? Leave me a comment.


  1. I had heard about some of those side effects so I decided to go with ParaGuard IUD - it has no hormones instead of the low hormone of Mirena and it is good for 10 years instead of 5. I have loved it so far and have not noticed any side effects. If you consider an IUD again, this is definately the one I would go with!

  2. Update: It has been 4 days now since I got it removed and I FINALLY dropped below my plateau (3 pounds more)! My skin is clearing up, and my belly fat is tightening. I feel happier and less anxious. I find it hard to believe these could all be caused by something else.

  3. Hey girlie! I just discovered your blog through the Product Review Place and I am your newest follower! Thank you so much for sharing this post. I have been considering Mirena for awhile now, and these are the very things I have been afraid of. Thank you for your honesty!

  4. Dawn,
    You are welcome. I wish I had heard some of these things too, but it seems like I am in the minority when it comes to these symptoms. My friend has it and LOVES it with no symptoms and no periods. Everyone is different, and just has to do what is right for them.

  5. UPDATE:
    One week later and I have lost 3.5 pounds! My gut is noticeably smaller, and my skinny jeans fit and are actually lose in the thighs and waist. I am still maintaining the same exercise and diet routine I did prior to having the Mirena removed.

  6. Thank you for pointing me to this post. All of your symptoms are exactly what I was going through for 6 months, especially the mood swings. If it did not stop, I would have had it taken out.

    I am loving the updates as we are thinking about having it removed because we would like to have another baby. I was curious how I would feel without it.

  7. Gingermommy,
    It has been about one month since I had it removed and I feel GREAT! My acne on my face is completely gone, I have lost 7 pounds, but best of all is ALL of the belly gut is gone! I am now 3 sizes smaller in pants. Best choice I have ever made.
    Thanks for your comments and story. Good luck, and hope everything works out well for you.

  8. Wow, Did you know there is a lawsuit against Mirena, for exactly what you mentioned? In Canada and the US. I'm getting Mirena out tomorrow, but read your post and may reconsider having another one placed. Thanks for your site.

  9. I am so relieved that I found your blog. I also just delivered my fourth child and was losing very slowly up until I had the mirena placed at my postpartum. In two months I gained 6 pounds and I am nursing successfully for the first time. My doctor swore that my gain has nothing to do with it but I have always been hormonally imbalanced and know that this is it since I am such a good eater and have been walking 1-3 miles at least four times per week. I just had it removed two days ago and still feel so down about having gained post baby. I was wondering if you know of any natural ways to rebalance hormones after getting mirena removed.
    Thank you for sharing!


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