A Diaphragm has been around for a while, and is an effective form of hormone-free contraception – but how on Earth do you use it??
What Is It?
The diaphragm is a solid birth control method — it’s hormone-free, reusable and hypoallergenic.
It’s basically a flexible, silicone barrier that sits on your cervix to prevent sperm coming into contact with an egg, creating a little cluster of cells that make a baby.
How Does It Work?
Essentially, it’s a little hat that covers your cervix and blocks the contact between his sperm and your egg.
For even more effective results, pair it with a spermicide, which stops the sperm from being able to swim (double whammy!).
It also needs to be in place for another six hours after your tryst to ensure maximum protection, basically waiting for all of the sperm to die…
How Effective And Safe Is It?
When using the Ortho All-Flex Diaphragm and proper, correct usage there is a 94% effectiveness rate.
That is if you remember to use it every time, place it correctly, apply spermicide, not let it slip out and not taking it out too early.
The typical rate is about 88% (because, let’s face it, we aren’t perfect).
With the Caya, one-size-fits-all brand, there is limited data available but suggest an 82-86% effectiveness.
Also, with this form of birth-control, remember to use a water-based lubricant if any at all, as oil-based ones don’t react well with silicone…
Large penises can also push it out of place.
Remember, they can only prevent pregnancy, not STI’s.
What Are The Benefits?
The main benefit to this method is that there are no hormonal side effects, and it can be used intermittently.
There is no delay in return to fertility and when it’s inserted properly, you shouldn’t feel any discomfort.
It’s not the most protective contraceptive on the market, so if you definitely can’t handle an unwanted pregnancy – do NOT use this as your sole form of birth-control.
If you suffer from Toxic Shock Syndrome, are allergic to silicone or spermicide, suffer regular urinary tract infections or have given birth in the last six weeks, sorry ladies! You should find alternate forms of birth-control.
How Do I Use A Diaphragm?
Make sure you’ve washed your hands, and applied spermicide and then carefully fold the diaphragm in half to insert it into your vagina.
You’ll want to push it as far in as possible, towards your tailbone, until it bumps into your cervix – this is where you want to place it.
Remember to wash it with warm water and non-perfumed soap six hours after intercourse, and place it somewhere clean to dry.
If taken care of properly, it can last you up to two years!
How Do I Get My Hands On One?
According to NSW Family Planning, Diaphragms may be bought from Family Planning clinics, online and most pharmacies once the correct size and type are known.
Source: NSW Family Planning