Male condom

Providing both pregnancy and STI prevention.

A short-term method of contraception.

The male condom is a barrier contraception method for preventing pregnancy and STIs.

When used correctly, condoms are highly effective. Condoms are also the only contraceptive method that protect against both pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including HIV and syphilis.

Condoms have to be used correctly every single time you have sex to be effective. 

Frequently asked questions about condoms

How do I use a condom?

Make sure you and your partner follow these steps when using condoms.

  • Use a new condom each time you have sex. Check the 'use by' date on the packet. Be careful how you take the condom out of the packet – sharp fingernails and jewellery can tear the condom
  • Find the teat or closed end and squeeze it to get rid of air. This will also help you roll the condom on the right way around
  • Put the condom on when the penis is fully erect and before it touches the vagina or genital area
  • Still holding the end, roll the condom all the way down the penis
  • If it won’t roll down, then it’s probably on inside out. If so, start again with a new condom as sperm could now be on the first one
  • If you have foreskin, you may find it easier and more comfortable to put the condom on if the foreskin is pulled back. This lets the foreskin move freely and reduces the risk of the condom tearing or slipping off
  • As soon as the man has ejaculated, and before the penis goes soft, hold the condom firmly in place while pulling out. Do this slowly and carefully so you do not spill any semen (the ejaculation fluid that contains sperm)
  • Take off the condom, wrap it and put it in a bin
    Make sure the penis does not touch the genital area again, and if you have sex again, use a new condom.

 

How good is the male condom at preventing pregnancy

The male condom works reasonably well at preventing pregnancy but its ability to stop a pregnancy largely depends it being used properly every time a couple has sex. This means it must be worn from the start to the finish of the sex act and a new one must be used for every sex act. With typical use 13 out of 100 users will become pregnant

What are the advantages of the male condom?

  • It can be used at any time.
  • You only need to use condoms when you have sex.
  • Male condoms can be used for any sexual activity (oral, anal and vaginal) and they help to protect against most sexually transmitted infections, including HIV.
  • Male condoms come in a variety of shapes, sizes and textures, including latex free options.
  • Male condoms do not have any side effects and will not affect monthly bleeding patterns.
  • Condoms can be used straight after childbirth, abortion or miscarriage.

What are the disadvantages of the male condom?

  • Condoms have to be used correctly every single time you have sex to be effective.
  • If the condom breaks, tears, falls off or gets pushed into the vagina during sex, then you may need to go to a doctor or pharmacy to use emergency contraception as soon as possible to prevent pregnancy (and you may be at risk of contracting a sexually transmitted infection).
  • Condoms will create a different sexual sensation than sex without a condom.

What to do if a condom breaks or slips off

If your condom breaks or slips off, you may need to use emergency contraception to prevent pregnancy. Please note that as well as pregnancy, unprotected sex can put you at risk of STIs.

If you're starting to use contraception for the first time, or thinking about using a new method, it's a good idea to have a full consultation.

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Why not get an STI test while visiting a clinic?

Something you should consider along with our condom service is an STI test to ensure your body is safe before you try this contraception method.

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