We’re all about health safety at MedSpring, and for sexually active individuals, health safety means consistently using condoms properly to reduce the risk of getting an STD. Even for the best-intentioned individual, there are some condom flaws that may make what seems like safe sex, unsafe.
Here’s what to look out for or keep in mind when using condoms:
- Expiration dates
- Wear it start to finish
- Visible damage
- Incompatible ingredients
Yep, condoms expire. Pay careful attention to the expiration dates because an expired condom can be less effective as it loses its elasticity.
The effectiveness of a condom heavily relies on using it correctly from start to finish. Start means the condom is on before any contact with your partner’s genitals; finish means the condom stays on until right after ejaculation.
Look for visible tears on the condom before using it. A visible tear could be due to manufacturer’s error, ripping/cutting the packaging open, fingernails or other causes.
Too little or the wrong kind of lubrication can lead to condom ineffectiveness. For example, latex condoms can be diminished by oil-based lubricants making them less effective. Additionally, avoiding using lubrication all together can lead to a condom tear during the act.
Even if you use a condom you can spread or get an STD; they are not completely effective at preventing the transmission of STDs. The CDC states that “consistent and correct use of latex condoms reduces the risk…” of common STDs like chlamydia, gonorrhea, herpes, syphilis and HPV, but condoms are not 100% effective.
Remember, if you ever need STD testing or treatment, MedSpring offers completely confidential and discreet testing in a safe and comfortable environment every day until 9 pm. You can pay with insurance or self-pay – the choice is yours. Learn more here.