Products to Prevent Female STI

A lot of people have heard of condoms for women but we have never been formally introduced to them. There are three different sexual products that fall into the female condom group including dental dams, female condoms and soft tampons. All three product’s have slightly different reasons why they are used. We have briefly described what each product does below.

Dental Dam
A dental dam is a thin square of latex that can be used to prevent the spread of sexually transmitted infections during oral sex.  They can be bought in some stores, or you can make your own using a condom or a latex glove. They are called “dental” dams because they were originally designed as a protective measure for dentists working on a patient’s teeth.  The local sexual health store used to supply them for free. However due to budget restraints they only supply condoms. They advise customers to cut them open and use them. Performing oral sex on a woman using a dental dam carries lower risk of getting a sexually transmitted disease. Getting an STI from vaginal sex, anal sex or performing oral sex on a man is much more common. A rim job carries some of the more dangerous health risks including including potentially transmitting Hepatitis A. It can also cause several other illnesses through bacteria or parasite infections. Dental Dams are more common used within lesbian or bisexual relationships.

Female Condom
The female condom is made from polyurethane and is inserted into the vagina before sex.  It is about 15cm long and has two flexible rings, one at each end, to keep it in place in the vagina.  One of the rings is closed and this end rests inside the woman’s vagina.  The other ring, which is open, rests outside. When used, it covers the cervix and lines the vagina and shields the vulva which is the entrance to the vagina. It provides a physical barrier between the penis and the vaginal walls during penetrative sex.  It also prevents the exchange of body fluids semen and vaginal fluids from transmitting to the other person. The ring outside the vagina acts as an anchor to prevent the condom from being pushed inside the vagina during sex.  It is also used for removing the condom after sex.  The female condom is self-lubricated but extra lubricant can be used. It is an alternative to the male condom as a barrier method for safer sex and contraception.

Steps to Use a Female Condom:

  1. Hold the inner ring (the closed end of the condom) and squeeze the edges of this ring together.
  2. Insert this end as far as possible into the vagina.  Upon release, the ring will open to hold the condom in place.
  3. With your fingers inside the condom, push it up into the vagina.  The outer ring should remain outside the vagina, resting against the labia.
  4. Be sure the condom has not twisted.
  5. Guide the penis into the vagina during sex.
  6. To remove the condom after sex, twist the outer ring and pull the condom out.  Wrap it in some tissue and dispose of the condom in a rubbish bin.

 

 

Womens Condom
STI Prevention: Female Condom



Soft Tampons
A Soft Tampon is what women use to prevent period blood to leak every where during sex. It is used instead of using regular tampons. The basic principle of the Soft Tampon has been known since the 18th century. There are historical reports of women using tiny natural sponges during their period. But in those days, there was little knowledge of physical hygiene, and less attention paid to comfort. Infections were frequent within their lifestyles. The most common soft tampon is the natural sea sponge. I learnt this trick at a very early age from talking to the local prostitute. I was always a curious one and felt no qualms in asking any question I wanted to. Our local prostitute was called Rose. I asked her what did she do for money when she had her period. This was where my sex education kicked off. Her advice was to find a natural sea sponge that had little or no holes. Wet the sponge squeeze out excess water and simply insert it like a tampon. She told me since it was a natural product it is better for your body and there is no chance you will have toxic shock syndrome. The sea sponge is very absorbent, but if you have sex with just a sea sponge, expect it to get shoved quite far back in your vaginal canal. This makes retrieving it hard to do by yourself because your hand will be bent at a bad angle. You can push down with your vaginal muscles and pull it out. The retrieval requires more effort than a regular tampon. You can also “squat and grunt.”

 

 

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