Saturday, February 21, 2009

Protect Yourself: Some Tips (pun intended) and Facts on Condoms

Codoms are an essential part of safe sex, and we all know safe=less stress=fun. We hope the act of getting a condom on is not an issue, and that the guys are ready, willing and able (and skilled) at getting it on. literally. God forbid, it were an issue: find the door. We welcome and suggestions for making this 'ohthiswillwreckthemood' cliche, a thing of the past. In the meantime, here are some fabulous facts:

* At least 55 million Americans have a sexually transmitted infection-that's 1 in 4 adults.

* Oils and most lotions will cause latex to break. Use only water or silicone based lubes with latex.

* You can still get a number of infections from unprotected oral sex.

* 1 in 5 newly infected individuals with HIV in the US has a drug resistant strain of the virus.

* Condoms help prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. Put on a condom before there is ANY vaginal, oral or anal contact with the penis.

* Make sure there are no air pockets at the top of the fitted condom. This makes them burst very easily. Squeeze any air out before you have intercourse.

* Never use oil-based lubricants (petroleum jelly or mineral oil) on latex condoms.

* Do not use a condom that is old or brittle.

* Store condoms in a cool, dry place to maximize their life and effectiveness.

* Don't store condoms in wallets; they could get damaged or worn out from the heat of the backside of a person or the pressure from being squished frequently

* Condoms can be weakened by exposure to heat or sunlight or by age.

* Always check the expiration date. Condoms should come with an expiration date.

* Always use a condom; going without one puts you and your partner at risk.

* DO NOT use more than one condom at a time as they can both tear due to the friction between them.

* In order to prevent the transmission of HIV (the virus that causes AIDS), you MUST use a latex condom, NOT a "natural" or animal skin condom. Animal skin condoms have tiny holes that HIV can get through, whereas latex condoms do not.

* Always put the condom on before ANY contact with your partner, not just before ejaculation. There are traces of sperm in the "pre-cum" liquid that comes from the erect penis and this too can cause pregnancy.

* To make it feel even better, put a drop or two of lube or Warming Liquid inside the condom before putting it on and apply a bit to the outside as well (it evaporates like water and doesn't leave a sticky mess).

* Always have condoms available. Put one or two condoms in your bag, pocket or purse. Keep a few near your bed. If the idea of someone seeing your condoms makes you squeamish, use a condom case.

* If you think using a condom "would kill the mood" try putting it on in a sexy way, like another bit of foreplay. Unrolling it over the penis can be sensual, even a turn-on. Don't limit your imagination; perhaps try applying the condom with your or your partner's mouth.

The Low Down:


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