Diaphragm Birth Control
The diaphragm is an attractive birth control alternative for women who are looking to avoid the hormonal impact of injections or oral contraceptives. When properly fitted and used appropriately, they are approximately 90% effective in preventing pregnancy. However, they do not provide protection against sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). They do not require a prescription, but must be customized for each woman and checked by a healthcare provider every year.
How Does a Diaphragm Work?
A diaphragm is made out of soft, flexible rubber that has been molded into a concave shape so that it fits snugly across the cervix, blocking sperm from entering the uterus. When used properly with spermicidal cream or jelly, they are a very effective form of preventing pregnancy. However, it’s important to closely follow these steps:
• Apply spermicide and insert the diaphragm into the vagina as much as one hour before sexual intercourse
• Re-apply spermicide if sex is to be had within six hours
• After intercourse, the diaphragm must remain in place for six hours after intercourse
• Spermicide and a diaphragm should always be used together: neither one is effective in preventing pregnancy when used alone.
It is important to gently wash the device after each use, and it must also be carefully examined for tiny holes. Checking for holes is as simple as running the diaphragm under water and inspecting to ensure that water does not leak through. If there are any leaks, no matter how small, the device is no longer effective and must be replaced.
If you’re interested in learning more about the diaphragm as an option for birth control, please watch this video.