All you need to know about contraceptive diaphragms

How to use it and how to find the right size for you


A contraceptive diaphragm is a type of birth control. It is made of silicone or latex material and can be inserted against the lining of the cervix to create a seal against the male discharge.

How to Use Contraceptive Diaphragm?

In order to use the diaphragm, you first need to wash your hands. Take the rim of the diaphragm and squeeze it into an arc or oval shape. You may also use a lubricant for easier insertion. Some women also prefer to add spermicide on the diaphragm for further protection. Once prepared, insert the diaphragm and push it as deep as possible against the wall of the cervix some time before the intercourse. Do not remove the diaphragm for at least six hours after intercourse.

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Which Material is Better?

Diaphragms come in two materials: latex and silicone. Depending on the storage and usage conditions, a latex diaphragm will last for one to three years. Silicone diaphragms will last longer, up to a decade. However, you should make sure you are not allergic to either material before usage.

Is the Diaphragm the Right Size?

There are different sizes for diaphragms and an appointment with your health professional can help you determine the right size for you. There are also one-size diaphragms available, but a doctor’s appointment is still needed. A diaphragm is the right size if it rests snugly against your cervix and covers your pubic bone. A large sized diaphragm will increase risks of urinary tract infections and put pressure on the urethral wall; a small sized diaphragm will become dislodged during intercourse.

When Should I Get a Diaphragm Fitting?

Depending on the menstrual cycle, diaphragm sizes can vary accordingly. For example, a larger sized diaphragm is required during the ovulation process, while a smaller size is required at the start of the menstrual cycle. It is best to inform your doctor when you last had your period so that it can help you get a perfect fit.

When Should I Get a Diaphragm Refitting?

Once you have a diaphragm fitted, do not consider it as a permanent solution. You will need to visit your doctor and get a new diaphragm under special circumstances. These circumstances can include weight gain or loss of more than 10 pounds (4.5 kg) and any pregnancy that lasts more than 14 weeks.

How Effective is a Contraceptive Diaphragm?

There are two ways to determine the effectiveness of a contraceptive diaphragm. The first way is the actual effectiveness, and the second way is the method effectiveness. The actual effectiveness is not as high as the method effectiveness since the couples make a lot of mistakes regarding diaphragm usage instructions.

What are the Advantages of Contraceptive Diaphragm?

The following advantages are the reason why diaphragms are used by a large proportion of women:

  • There is no interference with the menstrual cycle.
  • Wait time or reversal is not needed like it is in contraceptive pills.
  • The diaphragm is only used during intercourse and can be removed once done.
  • There is no interference in intercourse or foreplay.
  • It is one of the least expensive contraceptive methods.
  • It offers protection against some sexually transmitted diseases and infections.

If you are considering contraceptive diaphragm as an option for birth control, visit your health professional today so that you can get an appropriate fitting after assessment of your case history.

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