Copper coil (IUD) vs Implant

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Copper coil (IUD)

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Implant

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Overview

Rated 3.5

553 reviews

5 - 10 years

Frequency

Over 99%

Effectiveness

None

Blood clot risk

None

Effect on fertility

Rated 2.8

580 reviews

Every 3 years

Frequency

Over 99%

Effectiveness

None

Blood clot risk

None

Effect on fertility

Copper coil (IUD) ingredients

Most copper coils are made of a T-shaped frame of polyethylene (plastic) and barium sulphate. Copper wire is wound around the vertical arm.

Implant ingredients

Main hormones in Implant

progestogen

What Lowdown reviewers say

57% no impact on mood

64% heavier periods

64% no impact

76% no impact

77% no impact on skin

Cycle return

46% in 1 month

38% somewhat negative

45% irregular periods

50% lost sex drive

41% gained weight

59% no impact on skin

Cycle return

30% in 1 month

Benefits: What this contraceptive can help with

There are no benefits that are recognised in scientific research or guidelines for this contraceptive

Heavy periods

Ovulation pain

Period pain

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Check out our latest reviews

Real life reviews from people like you

Copper coil (IUD) reviews

553 reviews

Copper coil (IUD)  
Used for 12 - 18 mo
23 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  2 weeks ago

Copper coil (IUD)  

I really wanted a contraceptive method which was not hormonal so the copper IUD was perfect for me. I had very light periods before and cramps once or twice a year. The only downside of the copper IUD is that my periods are heavier but very manageable and I have cramps every month but not painful enough to require painkillers. I was terrified for my insertion but to my surprise, it was not bad at all! I would rate it a 6/10 in pain that only lasts a minute. The cramping afterwards only lasted a day and was also similar to period cramps.

Read more

Top side effects not reported

0 helpful

0 comments

Copper coil (IUD)  
Used for 5 - 8 yr
50 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  3 weeks ago

Copper coil (IUD)  

I had side effects with the pill and was put on the copper coil. I had no side effects and no pregnancy so it was a winner for me. Insertion is not much fun but over quickly.


Top side effects not reported

0 helpful

0 comments

Copper coil (IUD)  
Used for 6 - 12 mo
30 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  15th Jun 24

Copper coil (IUD)  

The biggest change going from the pill to the copper coil for me is that period cramps became more painful and my period now lasts longer. However, after three months the pain settled down and now only occurs the first few days of my period, is less frequent and is easily controlled with paracetamol. The biggest advantage with this contraception is my boost in mood. No more mood swings, feeling low and my sex drive has improved. Great for anyone sensitive to hormones. I was worried about the insertion and nearly didn't go because of what others had told me but I had nothing to worry about. I was told to take paracetamol before the appointment, was given the anesthetic and was surprised by how quickly the process was. I asked the nurse, is that it? I wish I hadn't listened to others and got it done years ago.


Very positive mood

1 more effect

0 helpful

0 comments

Copper coil (IUD)  
Used for 12 - 18 mo
23 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  2 weeks ago

Copper coil (IUD)  

I really wanted a contraceptive method which was not hormonal so the copper IUD was perfect for me. I had very light periods before and cramps once or twice a year. The only downside of the copper IUD is that my periods are heavier but very manageable and I have cramps every month but not painful enough to require painkillers. I was terrified for my insertion but to my surprise, it was not bad at all! I would rate it a 6/10 in pain that only lasts a minute. The cramping afterwards only lasted a day and was also similar to period cramps.


Top side effects not reported

0 helpful

0 comments

Copper coil (IUD)  
Used for 5 - 8 yr
50 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  3 weeks ago

Copper coil (IUD)  

I had side effects with the pill and was put on the copper coil. I had no side effects and no pregnancy so it was a winner for me. Insertion is not much fun but over quickly.


Top side effects not reported

0 helpful

0 comments

Copper coil (IUD)  
Used for 6 - 12 mo
30 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  15th Jun 24

Copper coil (IUD)  

The biggest change going from the pill to the copper coil for me is that period cramps became more painful and my period now lasts longer. However, after three months the pain settled down and now only occurs the first few days of my period, is less frequent and is easily controlled with paracetamol. The biggest advantage with this contraception is my boost in mood. No more mood swings, feeling low and my sex drive has improved. Great for anyone sensitive to hormones. I was worried about the insertion and nearly didn't go because of what others had told me but I had nothing to worry about. I was told to take paracetamol before the appointment, was given the anesthetic and was surprised by how quickly the process was. I asked the nurse, is that it? I wish I hadn't listened to others and got it done years ago.


Very positive mood

1 more effect

0 helpful

0 comments


Implant reviews

580 reviews

Implant  
Used for 8+ yr
29 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  1 month ago

Nexplanon implant  

I had 3 implants over 9 years. On the surface I thought I had minimal side effects, with the exception on loss of periods (approx. 2 per year). However I decided to take a break having spent a decade on continuous hormonal birth control. I now realise that there where several effects on my mood. Mostly flat lining of my emotions, I never felt things intensely and left me a bit closed off. My libido was very suppressed and took 3/4 months to come back, in line with my periods returning semi- regularly. I also no longer feel constantly bloated or have regular stomach aches. However I didn't get pregnant or experience bad side effects, so I can't say it was a wholly 'negative' experience. I won't however go back to hormonal birth control anytime soon!


Somewhat negative mood

2 more effects

0 helpful

0 comments

Implant  
Used for 5 - 8 yr
27 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  1 month ago

Nexplanon implant  

I had the implant fitted as I wanted reliable contraception that I didn't need to think about constantly. I had some slight spotting for a couple of months after getting it fitted, but apart from that, the first three years were all fine. When I came to have it changed, the nurse could not locate the implant, so it couldn't be removed during my appointment. I then had to wait six moths to see a specialist at the 'deep implant clinic' who was able to find it and remove it, few, however this whole experience was pretty worrying during those few months. I was not going to have a new one put into my arm but during this appointment I suddenly changed my mind and decided to have another one put in. This second implant I had for two years, then after my 6 year relationship broke down, I recently had it removed a couple of months ago to see how I felt not being on hormonal contraception. Amazing is the answer.


Somewhat negative mood

1 more effect

0 helpful

0 comments

Implant  
Used for 18 mo - 3 yr
24 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  15th Jun 24

Nexplanon implant  

For two years I had good and bad experiences with the Implant. I would definitely say the negative side effects definitely fall under mental health (depression and mood swings), sometimes I would get nausea to the point of wanting to vomit everywhere, migraines, lower back pain. My libido is below low levels. I think I lost myself over this 2 years, I don't feel like the same person mentally. However, this is the best contraception in terms of insertion and daily practicality. I wanted to start having contraception but I didn't want the pill (because I am very forgetful), I didn't want the diaphragm (too complicated) but this one was just perfect and painless procedure. Also, my body changed a little bit over the years but it was because I started being careless with my eating habits, so it is easy for your weight to change with the implant. And in terms of hair and skin, for me it didn't change much, I would get a pimple every now and then but it would go away by itself. If it wasn't for the mental health for sure I wouldn't take it out.


Very negative mood

1 more effect

0 helpful

0 comments

Implant  
Used for 8+ yr
29 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  1 month ago

Nexplanon implant  

I had 3 implants over 9 years. On the surface I thought I had minimal side effects, with the exception on loss of periods (approx. 2 per year). However I decided to take a break having spent a decade on continuous hormonal birth control. I now realise that there where several effects on my mood. Mostly flat lining of my emotions, I never felt things intensely and left me a bit closed off. My libido was very suppressed and took 3/4 months to come back, in line with my periods returning semi- regularly. I also no longer feel constantly bloated or have regular stomach aches. However I didn't get pregnant or experience bad side effects, so I can't say it was a wholly 'negative' experience. I won't however go back to hormonal birth control anytime soon!


Somewhat negative mood

2 more effects

0 helpful

0 comments

Implant  
Used for 5 - 8 yr
27 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  1 month ago

Nexplanon implant  

I had the implant fitted as I wanted reliable contraception that I didn't need to think about constantly. I had some slight spotting for a couple of months after getting it fitted, but apart from that, the first three years were all fine. When I came to have it changed, the nurse could not locate the implant, so it couldn't be removed during my appointment. I then had to wait six moths to see a specialist at the 'deep implant clinic' who was able to find it and remove it, few, however this whole experience was pretty worrying during those few months. I was not going to have a new one put into my arm but during this appointment I suddenly changed my mind and decided to have another one put in. This second implant I had for two years, then after my 6 year relationship broke down, I recently had it removed a couple of months ago to see how I felt not being on hormonal contraception. Amazing is the answer.


Somewhat negative mood

1 more effect

0 helpful

0 comments

Implant  
Used for 18 mo - 3 yr
24 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  15th Jun 24

Nexplanon implant  

For two years I had good and bad experiences with the Implant. I would definitely say the negative side effects definitely fall under mental health (depression and mood swings), sometimes I would get nausea to the point of wanting to vomit everywhere, migraines, lower back pain. My libido is below low levels. I think I lost myself over this 2 years, I don't feel like the same person mentally. However, this is the best contraception in terms of insertion and daily practicality. I wanted to start having contraception but I didn't want the pill (because I am very forgetful), I didn't want the diaphragm (too complicated) but this one was just perfect and painless procedure. Also, my body changed a little bit over the years but it was because I started being careless with my eating habits, so it is easy for your weight to change with the implant. And in terms of hair and skin, for me it didn't change much, I would get a pimple every now and then but it would go away by itself. If it wasn't for the mental health for sure I wouldn't take it out.


Very negative mood

1 more effect

0 helpful

0 comments

Implant  
Used for 3 - 6 mo
36 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  27th May 24

Nexplanon implant  

Getting it put in: was a little more involved and bigger than I expected. It was fine, little gross but I couldn't feel it and just avoided looking. They numb the arm area, and slowly insert it. It feels like the they're slowly inserting the pointy side of one of those old school card sized mail openers. It was fine. You can do it. Was much more appealing to me than pill or any vaginal coil. Experience 0-3 months: irregular bleeding, spotting, almost constantly for the first three months. Not heavy at all, very light but irregular. No cramps and before I had these a lot! Experience 3-7 months: no period, no spotting, no cramps. It's amazing and I'm so happy with it. My hair has been shedding more but I have a lot of very thick Asian hair so unsure if related. I've had increased appetite, but again this could be due to other factors in life. No other side effects. I'm very pleasantly surprised. I expected a pretty difficult journey with this one, but it's the best contraceptive I've used so far.


Top side effects not reported

0 helpful

0 comments

Implant  
Used for 3 - 6 mo
28 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  20th May 24

Nexplanon implant  

I was originally on the Evra patch, but I got the implant as I was moving from the UK to NZ - where the patch is not available and id have to pay out of pocket for any other kind of pill. My experience was awful. I had constant, nonstop breakthrough bleeding, anxiety, stress, depression, suicidal ideation and no libido. I was very sensitive to stress and pollen so would come home from work and be absolutely drained, stuck in bed with an awful headache. I was bloated all the time and gained weight as I was bingeing to help deal with the stress of moving and my side effects from the implant - I suffer from an eating disorder… I was a mess. Not a great mix when you move to the other side of the world with your boyfriend. I do deal with real bad dryness around ovulation when I’m not on any contraception - so the patch and implant did help with that - but of course bleeding for 4 months straight did not help anything else. My doctor was very worried about my iron levels… Everything got so bad with my moods and the physical side effects, my boyfriend was like “you need to sort this out and have it remove or think about moving home…” I had it removed in November 2022. Currently not on any contraception but thinking about Yaz or Yasmin. Although not subsidised here in New Zealand, everything else available that is subsidised has a high androgenic strength. Not impressed, however i had a very good experience with Yasmin back in 2017, so maybe it’s best I eat up the £75 charge for 6 months worth? Can’t wait to move back home so I have access to free contraception lol.


Very negative mood

3 more effects

0 helpful

0 comments

Implant  
Used for 18 mo - 3 yr
34 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  20th May 24

Nexplanon implant  

Persistent thrush immediately after getting it fitted, also VERY low mood when period is due and generally more emotional.


Somewhat negative mood

2 more effects

0 helpful

0 comments

Implant  
Used for 3 - 6 mo
25 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  20th May 24

Nexplanon implant  

I love the implant. My doctor refused to renew my combination pill due to high blood pressure, and at first I was really disappointed and angry because I had been really happy with that method and I was afraid that a new method would give me side effects. After five months, however, I haven’t had any unwanted side effects whatsoever. The only change for me is that I don’t get periods, but it’s actually a bonus. During the first five months I’ve had a tiny bit of spotting maybe twice and it only lasted a day if that. I know everyone is different but I would highly recommend the implant!


Top side effects not reported

0 helpful

0 comments

Implant  
Used for 3 - 5 yr
25 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  14th May 24

Nexplanon implant  

It was good for the first implant but then when my second one was fitted I bled for almost a whole year and became very exhausted


Somewhat positive mood

0 helpful

1 comments

Implant  
Used for 18 mo - 3 yr
29 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  14th May 24

Nexplanon implant  

I really enjoyed the implant for the first 12 months, however after this I started to spot more and more and for longer periods. These were also accompanied with increased fatigue and pain. The breakout bleeding than got progressively worse until the end of the 3 year period. Otherwise little to no symptoms which was made the increasing spotting so much more annoying!


Somewhat positive mood

1 more effect

0 helpful

0 comments

Implant  
Used for 12 - 18 mo
28 years old
🇬🇧 UK
  •  7th May 24

Nexplanon implant  

It was my first time on contraception, I was afraid to forget the pill and had the feeling that the implant had less hormones in it. My mood was very fluctuating for the first 4-6 months but then settled. My period was much lighter at the beginning and not painful for the first few months, then actually got irregular after 7-8 months (only a few days, then nothing for 2 weeks, then 3 weeks long period...) The insertion of the implant was very easy and not too painful, been able to feel it since the beginning.


Somewhat negative mood

1 more effect

0 helpful

0 comments

Contraceptive alternatives and comparisons

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