They are commonly made out of latex, and are often called rubbers. They can also be made out of plastic or natural membranes. A condom looks like a long, thin, deflated balloon.
Types of Condoms
Natural membrane condoms (skin condoms) are slightly less effective at preventing pregnancy and more expensive than latex condoms. However, they may help if either partner is sensitive to latex. Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) can be transmitted through a skin condom, so skin condoms are only helpful in preventing pregnancy.
If allergy to condom use seems to be a problem, check to see if it’s actually the latex that's causing the allergic reaction and not the spermicidal. Some people are allergic to the spermicidal Nonoxynol–9. (Test this by using a non–lubricated condom or a condom with a non–spermicidal lubricant). If the allergic reaction persists, you may indeed be allergic to latex, although this allergy is less common than an allergy to spermicidal. A better alternative to using skin condoms may be to use polyurethane condoms, since these prevent infection as well as pregnancy.
Advantages and effective use of condoms
Condoms are safe, and they are effective at preventing both infection and pregnancy when used with each act of sex. Condoms can make sex less messy. After a man comes, his semen stays inside the condom. Putting on the condom can be a fun, erotic experience if your partner puts the condom on your penis, or you put it on your partner’s penis. If you use a water–based lubricant such as Astroglide, KY Jelly or KY plus Nonoxynol–9, it may decrease the chance of your condom breaking. Hold the rim of the condom onto the penis during withdrawals.
Disadvantages of using Condoms
Unless the partner puts it on as a part of foreplay, the condom interrupts sex. When putting the condom on the penis you must avoid tearing the condom or putting a hole in it with fingernails, a ring, or anything sharp. This includes anything sharp in the mouth. Some men cannot maintain an erection with a condom on, though this is not common. The man must pull out soon after ejaculation. If he becomes soft, the condom can fall off and be left in the vagina or anus without the couple knowing that this has happened. Some people are sensitive or allergic to latex or find the smell very unpleasant.
Vasectomy is an operation which blocks the tubes that carry the sperm. As a result, when the man ejaculates, there is no sperm in the semen. Sperm is created in the testicles. The sperm travels through this tube, called the vas deferens. The sperm mix with other fluids and are carried to the penis and outside the body where they can reach the egg and lead to a pregnancy, unless a vasectomy has been performed.
Advantages of a vasectomy
A vasectomy is a minor operation. It is safe, effective and permanent.
It is an excellent form of contraception for men who are in stable relationships and who do not want any more children. It is less expensive and involves fewer complications than tubular legation.
You can have your semen checked at any time to see if your operation is “Still working”.
A vasectomy gives the man the opportunity to play a responsible role in the contraceptive process.
It does not affect a man’s ability to enjoy sexual intercourse.
Disadvantages of a vasectomy
A vasectomy requires surgery. Some men are afraid of having an operation on their testicles.
A vasectomy may involve some pain or discomfort and scrotal discoloring (usually not severe) for several days after the operation. Pain can usually be relieved with mild pain medications. An ice pack must be kept on the scrotum for at least 4 hours after surgery to reduce the chances of swelling, bleeding and discomfort. Scrotal support must be worn for 2 days after the operation
The operation is not effective immediately. You will need to use condoms until the sperm clears from your tubes (15–20 ejaculations). To find if you are sterile, have your semen examined under a microscope after about 15 ejaculations.
The operation to reverse a vasectomy does not always work. It is highly technical, expensive, and its results cannot be guaranteed.
A vasectomy offers no protection against sexually transmitted infections including HIV (the AIDS virus).