Condoms are probably the greatest types of contraception as a result of they’re low cost, you should buy them anyplace, they assist forestall being pregnant, they usually additionally assist cease the unfold of STIs. However nonetheless, they don’t seem to be good.
Condoms can break and are additionally vulnerable to consumer error (similar to placing them on incorrectly or selecting the fallacious dimension). For that purpose, exterior condoms (the sort that goes onto a penis) are solely about 85 % efficient at stopping being pregnant in actual life, in response to Deliberate Parenthood — that is in comparison with 98 % efficient with good use.
To assist forestall undesirable being pregnant and defend your self and your associate towards STIs, you must be sure you know the best way to use a condom correctly, in addition to the required steps you may take to forestall them from breaking.
Why Condoms Break
- The condom is previous its prime. Condoms are sometimes good for 3 to 5 years after their manufacture date, however they do expire. You’ll want to examine your condom wrappers for the expiration date and take be aware so that you could use them earlier than that date, explains Carrie Smith, vp of product improvement at Cake, a sexual well being and wellness firm that makes condoms. If a condom is expired, the fabric (whether or not latex, polyurethane, or lambskin) could have degraded and misplaced its power and can be extra prone to tear. There ought to be a bit air bubble within the package deal that you could really feel if you happen to evenly squeeze the wrapper, in response to Deliberate Parenthood. This signifies that the package deal has not damaged open, and so the condom itself can be in good situation. If a condom is torn, dry, stiff, or sticky, toss it.
- Storage points. Relying on the place you retain your condoms, they may very well be extra vulnerable to breaking. “Uneven heating and cooling can weaken the latex, making approach for the opportunity of breaking by the condom throughout penetration,” Smith says. For that purpose, condoms should not be saved in sizzling locations similar to a glove compartment or a pockets. Within the case of the latter, friction can even harm them, in response to the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention. As an alternative, maintain condoms in a cool, dry place the place they are not being rubbed, bent, or smashed, similar to your drugs cupboard or nightstand. Or if you happen to’re on the go, you may retailer them in a small compartment of your bag or purse.
- Opening it with out care. In case you open a condom in a rush or incorrectly, you threat ripping the condom itself. By no means tear open a condom along with your tooth or scissors, in response to Deliberate Parenthood. As an alternative, rigorously push the condom out of the best way when you tear the package deal open rigorously in response to the directions.
- An excessive amount of friction or lack of lubrication throughout intercourse. Friction is a part of what makes intercourse pleasurable — however on this case, it’s doable to have an excessive amount of of an excellent factor. “An excessive amount of friction can’t solely trigger the condom to tear however can even trigger irritation to 1 or each companions,” Smith says. To assist forestall condom breakage, lubrication is a should. That is particularly essential throughout anal intercourse, because the anus does not produce its personal lubrication just like the vagina does. You’ll want to use lubricated condoms or use further lube if you might want to. ” lube could make an enormous distinction in lowering friction,” Smith explains.
- You are utilizing the fallacious lubricant. In case you’re utilizing latex condoms, oil-based lubricants can weaken the fabric and trigger a tear. Meaning no utilizing coconut oil, therapeutic massage oils, or arousal oils. “Oil-based lubes ought to by no means be used with [latex] condoms as oil degrades the fabric and may result in tearing,” Smith says. “Silicone, water-based, or hybrid lubes are additionally a fantastic alternative for condom use. Experiment utilizing completely different lube sorts and see which feels the most effective for you and along with your condom.”
- The condom does not match. “Dimension actually does matter,” Smith says. “Slippage happens when utilizing a condom that is too lengthy or unfastened, and tearing can occur if you’re utilizing a condom that’s too tight or too brief.” Experiment with different-sized condoms to get a comfortable match — not too tight and never too unfastened.
If a condom does break throughout intercourse, keep calm and assess your choices. You possibly can take emergency contraception, if you need, and chat along with your physician about getting examined for STIs.
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