I've been talking a lot about many forms of birth control including hormonal ones like the Pill, the Patch, and Depo-Provera, and about barrier methods like the male and female condom. A diaphragm is another form of barrier method, which prevents sperm from getting to your precious eggs.
It is a shallow, bowl-shaped piece of rubber with a flexible rim that fits over your vagina and covers the cervix so sperm can't reach your uterus.
Your vaginal muscles keep it in place.
- You need to get fitted for one by your gynecologist, but once you have it, and if you take care of it properly, it should last 1-2 years.
- It usually can't be felt during sex by either partner.
- You can keep it inside you for up to 24 hours.
- It doesn't change your menstrual cycle.
- It doesn't affect future fertility.
- It's only 84% effective at preventing pregnancy.
- It doesn't protect you against STIs.
- You have to use it with spermicide, which can be messy and irritating to some women.
- More spermicide has to be added every time you have sex.
- You have to leave it inside you for at least 6 hours after intercourse
- If the diaphragm is left in place for more than 24 hours, the woman runs the risk of toxic shock syndrome (TSS).
- It's possible that the diaphragm can become dislodged during sex. If that happens, there's a chance you could become pregnant.
- It may cause UTIs.
- If you gain or lose 10 pounds, you may need to be fitted for a new size.
There are unfortunately many disadvantages so click here to read more
If you are in a mutually monogamous relationship with someone you know is disease free, this could be a great option for you. Although the fact that it's only 84% effective at preventing pregnancy doesn't make me want to jump up and get one! Talk to your gynecologist about whether a diaphragm is right for you.
Dear's Advice: The natural hormones in a female body affect the position of her cervix throughout her cycle. To ensure a proper fit, women should make sure that she is fitted mid-cycle at the time of ovulation, when her cervix is the highest.