How to Use a Condom
When to use a condom
Pregnancy prevention. Use a condom and spermicide to prevent pregnancy. Make sure to check the condom's expiration date, and do not use it if past that date.
STD protection. To protect yourself and your partner from STD infection, use a condom during vaginal, oral, or anal sex. Even if you are protected against pregnancy by other birth control methods, condoms are the best available protection against sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), including human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). (The only way to be completely protected against sexually transmitted diseases, however, is to abstain from sex.)
A rubber barrier (dental dam) can be used for protection during oral sex.
Proper condom use
Condoms are most effective if you follow these steps.
Buying and storing condoms
The female condom is a tube of soft plastic (polyurethane) with a closed end. Each end has a ring or rim. The ring at the closed end is inserted deep into the vagina over the cervix, like a diaphragm, to hold the tube in place. The ring at the open end remains outside the opening of the vagina. The female condom can be inserted up to 8 hours before sexual intercourse. It should not be used at the same time as a male condom.
The female condom should be removed immediately after intercourse, while the woman is still lying down. The outside ring is twisted to close off the condom and hold the semen inside before the condom is removed. A new condom should be used with each act of sexual intercourse. Female condoms are sold in drugstores or family planning clinics.
The female condom provides some protection of the genital area around the opening to the vagina during intercourse and may reduce the risk of getting or transmitting diseases such as genital herpes or genital warts.
eMedicineHealth Medical Reference from Healthwise
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