Second Nature Care Blog

IUDs and Vaginal Dysbiosis - Ozone Therapies

[fa icon="calendar'] Jan 2, 2019 7:13:53 AM / by Winter Ninivaggi

An IUD can prevent pregnancy for several years but it can also seriously effect the vaginal microbiome. 

While most side effects of IUD are exceedingly rare, one potential side effect is still being studied, the effect of copper IUDs on the risk of bacterial vaginosis and other studies have found that IUDs can support colonies of potentially harmful bacterial in the uterus. 

If you are currently using an IUD or considering getting one, it is important to consider how to keep your microbiome happy and healthy. Plastic IUDs release small amounts of hormones into the uterus which thicken cervical mucus and prevent fertilization.  Copper IUDs have the same effect, but release small amounts of copper instead of hormones which may be safer for those who are unable to use hormonal birth control.  

 BV is a kind of dysbiosis, an imbalance of bacteria in your microbiome. BV occurs when the propotion of helpful Lactobacillus in your vagina decreases and various other bacteria including Gardnerella, Mycoplasma, or Prevotella – increase.

While BV usually goes away on its own but, some cases may require antibiotic treatment or natural suppositories. We recommend some from Vitannica.  

Several studies have found that those with copper IUDs were more likely to experience BV. In one study, 49% of patients with a copper IUD had bacterial vaginosis after 180 days of insertion, as compared to 27% of patients without IUDs.  (Ubiome)

Research has found that copper IUDs are often covered in The Elusive Biofilm that can contribute to dysbiosis. 

Why might copper IUDs increase BV risk? Research has found that copper IUDs are often covered in biofilms, thin layers of bacteria that grow on the surface of the IUD in the uterus and that can contribute to dysbiosis. Scientists also speculate that increased menstrual flow and spotting, common side effects of the copper IUD, can change the vaginal microbiome, leading to a decrease in Lactobacillus and eventually BV .

If you have an IUD and even if you don't it is still important to take steps to lower your risk of BV by maintaining a healthy microbiome. 

  • Use healthy diet and probiotics to support your microbiome. 
  • Avoid using harsh or perfumed soaps.
  • Smoking can harm the vaginal microbiome.

Vaginal ozone treatment can be used to eliminate bacterial vaginosis. Along with vaginal probiotics to regulate the microbiome of the vagina. 

If BV is contracted it is necessary that you eat properly get enough rest and make sure to take your vitamin D! We have natural suppositories for BV

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Adult Sexual Dysfunction

Could an IUD Alter the Vaginal Microbiome? -. (n.d.). Retrieved from

Winter Ninivaggi

Written by Winter Ninivaggi

Isadora Guggenheim, ND, RN, MS, CNS LMT, owner of Second Nature Naturopathic Care, LLC
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