Male condom

What is the male condom?
How does the male condom work?

Who can use the male condom?

How do I use the male condom?

What are the advantages, possible side effects/problems of the male condom?

Remember

What is the male condom?

The male condom is a thin sheath that covers the penis. Most condoms are made of latex, although polyurethane, plastic, and lambskin condoms are available. A variety of condoms are available: plain or reservoir-tipped, dry or lubricated form, straight or shaped, smooth or textured, natural or brightly coloured, and a variety of sizes. Free condoms are available at the Sexual Health Centre and other community health centres. The male condom is 85 to 98 per cent effective if used the right way.

Type of condom

Comments

Latex condom

  • Most popular
  • More effective if used with a spermicide like vaginal contraceptive film(VCF)
  • Protects against sexually transmitted infections (STIs)
  • Prevents pregnancy

Polyurethane condom

  • Stronger than the latex condom
  • Transmits more body heat, allowing more sensitivity
  • More resistant
  • Can be used with oil-based lubricants
  • Can be used by those who are sensitive or allergic to latex
  • More expensive than latex condoms
  • Provides protection against STIs and pregnancy similar to latex condoms

Plastic condom

  • Higher risk of breakage than latex condoms
  • Ability to protect against STIs is unknown
  • Prevents pregnancy

Lambskin condom

  • Made from lamb’s intestines
  • Not recommended for protection against STIs
  • Prevents pregnancy

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How does the male condom work?

The male condom acts as a barrier that prevents contact between bodily fluids (semen or vaginal secretions) and the sexual partner. The male condom protects against unintended pregnancy and STIs and HIV.

Who can use the male condom?

The male condom is for men for oral, vaginal, and anal sex.

How do I use the male condom?

  • Check the expiry date
  • Check the package. It should be sealed and not ripped
  • Put a drop of water-based lubricant or saliva on the tip of the condom for better sensation (oil-based lubricant can only be used with polyurethane condoms)
  • Place the rolled condom over the tip of the erect penis
  • Leave a space at the tip of the condom for semen collection if the condom does not already have a reservoir at the tip
  • It not circumcised, pull back the foreskin with one hand
  • Pinch the air out of the tip
  • Unroll the condom over the erect penis. Unroll it all the way down to the base of the penis;
  • Apply lubricant outside of condom
  • Remove the condom immediately after ejaculation (“cumming”). Hold the condom on the base of the penis while pulling out. Pull out before the penis softens
  • Use a new condom every time you have sex

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What are the advantages, possible side effects/problems of the male condom?

Advantages

  • Easily accessible and affordable
  • It can be used in combination with other methods of birth control
  • Protects against pregnancy. Latex and polyurethane condoms protect against most STIs and HIV

Possible side effects/problems

  • Allergy to latex and irritation
  • Spermicidal condoms may cause irritation to the genitals
  • Slippage or breakage
  • Decreased sensation or loss of erection

Remember

  • Store condoms away from heat, light, and friction to protect the latex
  • Novelty condoms do not offer protection against STIs and pregnancy
  • Call the AIDS & Sexual Health Info Line at 613-563-2437 if you have questions or need help
  • For more information on the male condom, please consult this Web site: www.sexualityandu.ca

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