What is diaphragm
The diaphragm is a soft, thin, dome-shaped flexible rim cup made of latex or silicone, which is used as a female contraceptive measure. A spermicide gel is also used with this. Spermicide gel is filled inside the cup. There are many types of contraceptives available in the market today. You can choose contraceptive measures to suit your convenience, lifestyle, and budget. Women are using the diaphragm for contraception in one form or another for many years.
The diaphragm acts as a barrier method of contraception. There are other barrier methods such as male and female condoms etc. Other contraceptives include contraceptive injections, copper tea, birth control pills, condoms, vasectomy, female sterilization, etc.
The diaphragm is fitted inside the woman’s vagina and it obstructs the entry of sperm into the cervix (the entrance to the uterus or womb) to prevent the egg from being fertilized. When the diaphragms are used correctly, it is a safe and effective option for women who are not able to take birth control pills or prefer any other method.
The risks are also very low and can be effective up to 94%. By reading this article, it will be easy for you to decide whether this remedy is right for you. This article explains in detail what the diaphragm is, what is the function of the diaphragms, and how to use the diaphragm, as well as the advantages, disadvantages, and cost of the diaphragm.
How to use the diaphragm
For any woman, her medical history should be used to assess the likelihood of diaphragm use and to detect possible contraindications.
What is the importance of using spermicides with the diaphragm, how long the diaphragms should be left inside the vagina, during sexual intercourse or sex, by the doctor to the woman’s anatomy of the vagina, and womb, how the barrier method works? Information about the possibility of it falling or moving from place to place, non-use of petroleum lubricants, proper care, rupture or examination of holes, possible side effects, and the process of placing the diaphragm inside the vagina, etc. are given.
Diaphragms come in different sizes, so you should visit your doctor to find out what size diaphragms will fit and consult them for the correct size and type of diaphragm. The largest comfortable size should be selected.
To use the diaphragm, after all, either seek the help of your doctor or use it in the following steps if you know yourself –
Ues of Diaphragms
- With your clean hands, pour a small amount of spermicide gel onto the upper surface of the diaphragm (approximately two 2 cm strips).
- Some women also feel that putting a little spermicide gel on the rim makes it easier to keep the diaphragm inside the vagina.
- Place your index finger over the diaphragms and press it between your thumb and other fingers.
- Now push the diaphragm upward inside your vagina. Make sure that the diaphragm is completely covering your womb.
- Always check that it is covering your womb, if you touch it, it feels like the end of your nose. If your uterus is not covered, put your finger under the rim or loop (if there is a loop), pull out the diaphragms, and try to fit it again correctly.
- Some women sit while fitting their diaphragms inside the vagina, while some women fit the diaphragm by lying or standing with one leg on a chair. You have to find out which position is easiest for you.
- If you are having your doctor apply a diaphragm, they may ask you to move around the room and exercise for 5 minutes to check for proper fitting of the vagina. Most women can use coil spring or arc spring diaphragm.
- If you are using it yourself, you should be able to insert the diaphragm correctly, assess when to use it, and remove it without difficulty.
- Women who are seeking help from the doctor should return to the doctor in 2 weeks to re-examine the fitting and position of the diaphragm.
The diaphragm should be examined annually or after a loss or after gaining more than 6-7 kg weight, after vaginal delivery, or for a second three-month gestation or after lower abdominal surgery.
Benefits of diaphragm
Some of the main advantages of using a diaphragm are the following –
- It does not affect the future fertility of the woman or man.
- Its use is required only when sexual intercourse is performed.
- If you are breastfeeding a baby, it is safe to use during this time also.
- It is less expensive than hormone-based measures of birth control or contraception.
- The diaphragm can also be used by women who smoke, and by women who have health problems in which it is dangerous to use estrogen.
- It does not affect your body’s natural hormones. Because no hormones are found in it.
- It can be used more than once.
- It can directly protect against pregnancy.
- You can use the diaphragm even if your partner does not want to use a condom.
- If it is used correctly, you and your partner do not even feel it during sex.
- If you want to try to get pregnant, you can easily remove it and stop using it.
Some women or their partners using the diaphragm may have the following side effects –
- Some people are sensitive to latex or spermicide gel chemicals. This may cause some women to have vaginal irritation or their partner’s penis.
- Women using the diaphragm may be more affected by a bladder infection (urinary tract infection or UTI). This is probably because the rim of the diaphragms pressures the urethra and can cause discomfort. If a woman has frequent UTI problems then she should use a small diaphragm or not use diaphragms.
- The diaphragms do not protect against STDs.
- Every time you have sex, you will need to re-inject sperm.
- Inserting the diaphragm into the vagina can be difficult and awkward. It may take you time to learn how to use it correctly.
- You can use it during your menstruation, but if it is not removed immediately after sex, it can increase your chances of getting an infection.
- It can move from place to place during sex, allowing sperm to enter the womb.
- You have to go to a doctor to take a diaphragm because it is not available without a prescription.
- The diaphragm should not be used by women who have ever suffered from toxic shock syndrome. It is important to check your diaphragms for any cracks, holes, or other damage that may reduce their effectiveness.
Do not use any petroleum-based vaginal creams, oils, or ointments that may damage the rubber. But it is safe to use water-based lubricants such as Astroglide and K-Y jelly.
You can buy it from any medical store, family planning center, or clinic. Some online sites also sell diaphragms, which if you know how to use them well, can buy online.
Diaphragms come in different sizes and different brands. So they may vary in price and some clinics may also charge additional fees for applying them. Discuss with your doctor ahead of time to discuss the options available to you and cool expenses.
Including the cost of getting the diaphragm, spermicide, and fitting done, it can cost you around 3500 to 20,000 rupees.
Note – This article is for information only. “health GJ” is not offering any type of medical advice under any circumstances. Decide which therapy is right for you by talking to your doctor.