What Are Condoms?
Condoms are a form of contraceptive barriers used during sexual intercourse. When used properly, condoms prevent fluids from entering the partner’s body. This barrier helps to protect against pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Generally, men use condoms as a form of protection, however female condoms are also available for protection.
There are many different brands and types of condoms on the market. Condoms are typically made from latex, but can also be made from polyurethane or lambskin. Also, condoms come in many different sizes and colors, may be non-lubricated or lubricated, and may or may not contain spermicide.
How Do They Work?
Condoms are typically made from latex and should be used during sexual intercourse. The condoms act as a barrier to prevent any body fluids from the man or woman from entering into another individual. Male condoms prevent semen from entering the body after ejaculation. Female condoms create a barrier between the semen and the cervix, preventing the semen or sperm from reaching and fertilizing the eggs. Condoms not only help to prevent pregnancy, they also are used to prevent contraction of a sexually transmitted disease or infection.
How Are They Used?
Condoms should be used before any sexual intercourse takes place for them to be most effective. Male condoms are used by placing it over top of the erect penis and unrolling it down to the bottom. Female condoms are inserted into the vagina, leaving the outer ring outside of the vagina. Condoms should be removed immediately after intercourse and should never be reused. If there are any tears or breaks in the condom, replace it immediately and seek a back up form of protection.
When used properly, condoms are extremely effective in not only preventing pregnancy, but preventing sexually transmitted diseases and infections. According to the Center for Disease Control, condoms are 98% effective in preventing pregnancy. It is important to remember that condoms have an expiration date and should not be used after this date has expired. To ensure maximum effectiveness, make sure there are no breaks, tears, or rips in the condom before using it.
- Effective in preventing pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs)
- Individuals are able to easily purchase them
- No preparation is needed
- There are no side effects, unless allergic to material or spermicide
- Many different options, sizes available
- Disrupt sexual intercourse, foreplay
- Chance of tearing or breaking
- May reduce sensitivity and pleasure
- Female condoms are not available everywhere