Intrauterine devices (IUDs) are one of the most effective forms of birth control.
When inserted into your uterus, these tiny, T-shaped pieces of plastic are 99% effective at preventing pregnancy. Another plus is that a hormonal IUD can last up to 8 years and a copper IUD can last up to 10 years before you need a replacement.
There’s no doubt that IUDs offer some pretty impressive benefits when it comes to preventing pregnancy long-term. But how much do they cost?
If you have health insurance, chances are that your plan will cover an IUD. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, most health insurance plans must cover prescription birth control, including hormonal birth control pills and IUDs, at no additional cost to you. You should be able to get free birth control through your insurance without paying a copay or other fees.
That said, you may have to pay for some of the IUD costs out of pocket, depending on your health insurance plan and the brand of IUD you choose.
Plus, depending on your insurance plan, you may have to pay additional fees for doctors’ visits, including your insertion and removal appointments.
The best way to find out whether your insurance plan covers the entire cost of an IUD is to contact the insurance company directly. Your doctor’s office may also be able to help you find out whether you’re covered.
What if I don’t have insurance?
If you don’t have health insurance and you’re paying for an IUD out of pocket, the prices can be pretty steep.
According to Planned Parenthood, out-of-pocket costs for IUDs can range from $500 to $1,300.
But don’t worry! If you don’t have insurance, there are assistance programs that can help with IUD costs.
In order to get an IUD, you’ll need a prescription from a doctor.
This means that if you’re interested in getting an IUD, you’ll need to make an appointment with a healthcare professional like a gynecologist or primary care physician.
If you don’t have insurance, you can visit a health clinic that offers programs that significantly reduce or totally cover the cost of your care.
A licensed medical professional, such as a doctor or nurse, must insert an IUD. This usually happens at a doctor’s office or clinic.
The process is quick, usually taking just a few minutes, but the insertion can cause some symptoms, such as cramping and pain.
If you have questions about IUD insertion, ask your doctor for more information. They can walk you through the process and tell you more about what to expect.
There are currently five brands of IUD that the Food and Drug Administration has approved for use in the United States.
IUDs are divided into two types: hormonal IUDs and copper IUDs.
The available hormonal IUDs are Mirena, Liletta, Kyleena, and Skyla.
They work by releasing a small amount of progestin — a form of the sex hormone progesterone, which is naturally found in your body. This induces changes in your body, such as cervical mucus thickening and thinning of the uterine lining, which make it harder for you to become pregnant.
Paragard is a copper IUD that prevents pregnancy by interfering with sperm’s ability to move, essentially blocking the sperm from reaching and fertilizing an egg.
Here’s how much each IUD costs on average if you pay out of pocket:
If you have health insurance, you should be able to get an IUD for free. However, depending on your plan and the type of IUD you’re interested in getting, you may have to cover some of the costs.
If you don’t have health insurance, there are plenty of ways to save money on an IUD.
Most IUD manufacturers offer assistance programs that can cover part or all of the cost of an IUD.
For example, Mirena offers a Copay Savings Program that helps lower out-of-pocket copay costs for Mirena IUDs. For those who don’t have health insurance, Bayer — the manufacturer of Mirena — offers The Bayer US Patient Assistance Foundation, which helps eligible people who don’t have insurance get products such as IUDs for free.
Health clinics also offer programs that can help make birth control more affordable to people who don’t have medical insurance.
If you have questions about IUDs or aren’t sure whether an IUD is the right choice for you, you can consult a trusted healthcare professional, such as your gynecologist or primary care physician.
They can help you narrow down the best birth control options, and their office can even help you contact your health insurance company to find out about coverage.
If you don’t have health insurance, you can make an appointment at a health clinic. Some offer financial assistance programs that can help you get affordable or free birth control, including IUDs.
Most insurance plans cover IUDs, but there still may be some costs involved, depending on your health insurance and the type of IUD you’re interested in getting.
If you don’t have insurance, there are ways to make getting an IUD more affordable.
Health clinics and manufacturers of IUDs such as Mirena offer assistance programs that can help you get an IUD at a lower cost and sometimes for free.