Condoms are one of the most common forms of contraception in the world. But although they have a plethora of benefits, they have some disadvantages too.
See some of the pros and cons of condoms to see if this method is right for you.
The first and most obvious benefit of condoms is that it is a highly effective means of preventing pregnancy. If used correctly, these little ‘rubbers’ are over 98% effective.
Condoms are Cheap & Convenient
Condoms are sold almost anywhere! From pharmacies to canteens, you can pretty much get a rubber anywhere. You don’t need a prescription or ID to buy them, and they’re really affordable (or sometimes free).
Condoms are a small, discreet, and portable way to get big protection from pregnancy and STDs.
Condoms are Sexy
Yup, you read right – condoms can be sexy! Protection is important but so is pleasure 😉 Thankfully, condoms offer both.
These love gloves come in lots of different sizes, styles, textures and even flavors to heighten the sensation. You can use them for oral, anal and vaginal sex.
Additionally, putting the condom on your partner can also be a sexy part of foreplay, especially if you add some water-based lube. Condoms can even delay ejaculation, so sex lasts longer.
But one of the sexiest parts of it is that is offers so much protection. So, you can focus on pleasure and your partner without worrying about pregnancy or STDs. Safe sex is better sex because it stops stress from killing the mood.
Effective Against STDs
Even when you are using hormonal contraception like the combination pill, it cannot prevent you from catching any sexually transmitted diseases or infections. Condoms are one of the most efficient ways of preventing STDs as it is a ‘barrier method’ which blocks any fluids from mixing or entering the body thereby avoiding STD development or pregnancy.
No Permanent Fertility Changes
Hormonal contraceptives can alter your body’s natural hormonal balance and increase your chances of blood clots, stroke and more. Condoms do not physically alter your fertility levels and doesn’t have any side-effects. This means that there is no hindrance to the person being able to conceive the next time they want to have sex. They are a “use and throw” contraception method.
Probably the largest complaint about condoms comes from those with latex allergies. Condoms can trigger latex allergies which may cause rashes, hives, runny nose and in severe cases, tightening of the airways and loss of blood pressure – which can really put a damper on the mood!
However, there are latex alternatives like polyurethane or lambskin condoms, but these tend to cost a little more.
Condoms are not Foolproof
No known method of contraception is 100% effective – not even some forms of sterilization. With condoms, there is still a risk of getting an STI or becoming pregnant.
That’s why many healthcare practitioners recommend using condoms in addition to hormonal contraception to decrease your chances of developing STDs and conceiving. If you’re unsure, visit your local doctor to find the best option for you.
Although it may seem easy, truth is that it may take some time getting used to. Condoms must be used consistently and diligently.
Follow these tips for safe and effective condom use:
Condom safety tips
Store in a cool, dry place. Exposure to air, heat and light increases the chance that a condom will break. Friction and heat can cause condoms to break down and become less reliable. Many people keep their it in their wallets, back pockets, and glove compartments but this can reduce efficiency due to the friction and heat exposure.
Check the expiration date. Yes, condoms have an expiration date. Before engaging sex, always check the expiration date to ensure effectiveness.
Check for damage. Look for brittleness, small tears or pinprick holes before using one.
Only use water-based lube. Oil based lubricants can weaken latex condoms and might cause it to break.
Never reuse. Reusing increases the risk of pregnancy and passing on STIs.
Only use one at a time. Although it may seem like a good idea, doubling up on condoms reduces its efficiency due to friction. Only use one condom at a time.
Use a condom for any sexual activity. STDs can occur through vaginal, oral, anal, and even skin-to-skin genital contact.
Learning about contraception is an important way to ensure that you and your partner are safe and child-free. Find out more about birth control, STDs and sex here: