Chances are you've heard of IUDs, or intra-uterine devices, which are inserted into the uterus to prevent pregnancy. There are two types of IUD: copper IUDs, which make your uterus an inhospitable environment for sperm, and hormonal IUDs, which works like any hormonal contraceptive to prevent ovulation and, in turn, pregnancy. But just as there are numerous questions about how hormones affect your reproductive life down the line, you might be wondering if the IUD affects menopause. You might not currently be thinking about menopause, or perimenopause, but given the long life cycle of an IUD, it's reasonable to want to start thinking about it now.
Menopause itself, the Royal Women's Hospital explains, is "the spontaneous, permanent end to menstrual periods that is not caused by medical treatment or surgery," and currently it's thought that it occurs because we "run out of eggs." People with female reproduction systems are born with around 300,000 eggs, according to the Cleveland Clinic, but only around 300 or 400 of those will ovulate during our lives, and egg levels are finite: they taper off until you have no more, which is when menopause hits. So how could an IUD affect this process — and what should people with IUDs know?