Saturday, January 23, 2010
Sunday Sex Ed Tips: CONDOMS
Welcome to the second installment of Sunday Sex Ed Tips. This week is all about condoms. Now, I know that we jumped right into spermicide last week, but I thought it might be good to take a step back and talk about the thing that H*yas for Choice gives out every week.
Condoms are a barrier method of contraception, as you see in the video above. When placed around the penis, they catch the ejaculate to prevent pregnancy. BUT THAT'S NOT ALL! (cue cheesy game show music) Condoms also act as a barrier to protect you from STIs! According to Planned Parenthood, latex condoms reduce the risk of getting chlamydia, canchroid, gonorrhea, hepatitis B, herpes, HIV, HPV, pelvic inflammatory disease, syphilis, and trichomoniasis. Condoms can protect you from STIs not only in vaginal sex, but in oral or anal sex as well.
So how do you properly put on a condom? Just remember OPRAH! Open-Pinch-Roll-Action-Hold. So, to open, first you check the expiration date. If it's expired, then stop there and throw that condom away. It will not protect you! If it's not expired, squeeze the condom over to one side and rip the package open at the other--you don't want to rip the condom!
Next, Pinch. Pinch the tip of the condom until it looks like an elf hat or sombrero. You don't want any air in the condom when it's placed on the penis! This tip that you're pinching will also serve as the receptacle for the ejaculate, so don't pull the condom tight onto the tip of the penis!!
Roll. Place that little sombrero or elf hat on the head of the penis, keeping the tip of the condom pinched. You need about a half inch of pinched condom left at the top when you unroll. Pull back the foreskin before unrolling the condom if the penis is uncircumcised. Now roll the condom down to the base of the penis and smooth out any air bubbles in the condom. (If the condom doesn't unroll easily, then your elf hat was upside down. Get a new condom and try again!)
Action. Well, I think you can all figure this one out...
Hold. Hold the condom against the base of the penis when you pull out. You don't want the condom to slip off at the end! Pull out before the penis softens to ensure that there isn't any spillage. Pull the condom off from the top, holding it tightly--don't unroll and let semen go everywhere. Also, pull the condom off pointing AWAY from your partner! Tie it up or wrap it in something and put it in the trash can--not the toilet. It will clog and be disgusting. Wash the penis before engaging in any more sex acts.
Ta-da! You now know how to use a condom properly! But once again (cheesy game show music) that's not all! Condoms can also be used for sex acts that don't involve a penis! How? By converting a condom into a DENTAL DAM! Dental dams are sheaths of latex that are placed against the vulva or the anus as a protection from STIs during oral-vaginal or oral-anal sex. Just like condoms, dental dams are a one-time-use-only product! It is possible to buy dental dams, but they aren't stocked in your average CVS and they are far more expensive than the FREE condoms from H*yas for Choice.
So, how do you turn a condom into a dental dam? It's actually pretty simple. All you need is a condom and a pair of scissors. You open the condom, once again checking the expiration date first and pushing the condom to the side so you don't rip it as you open the package. Then you snip off the tip of the condom and make a single slice up the side. You unroll it and you now have a latex barrier or dental dam! Ta-da!
Congratulations! You now know more about condoms and dental dams than I did when I started writing this piece. Please leave any questions or "OMG" moments in comments! And don't forget, OPRAH!