Today is Pi Day, 3.14. And it's also National Condom Day! So, before you start eating pie off each other's bodies, make sure you have condoms!!!
According to a fact sheet on HIV from the CDC (Center for Disease Control), 1.2 million people in the US have HIV and 1 in 5 aren't aware that they have it. So, you could be sleeping with someone who has it. This is only one reason to wrap it up!!! Syphilis, gonorrhea, herpes, genital warts, HPV, crabs, trich, etc. are all STDs you can get from sexual contact with someone. Notice I said sexual contact. You CAN get an STD from oral and anal contact. Even a cold sore (herpes) in your mouth can give your partner herpes on their genitals. This is pretty rare, but the point is, it CAN happen.
You don't only have to worry about disgusting, painful, itchy, discharge-y sores and infections. Pregnancy is also a factor. According to Men's Health, Indiana University calculated some percentages from 16 years of data from 50 different studies about condoms. Some frightening facts: "Across the numerous studies, between 17 percent and 51.1 percent of people reported putting a condom on after intercourse has already begun." Putting on a condom after you've started does very little. Not only have you already been exposed to any kind of STD or STI, precum can get you pregnant. Along the same lines, Between "13.6 percent and 44.7 percent of the respondents reported removing the condom before intercourse was complete." If you started with a condom, why would you take it off before finishing the sex?!
Other problems include people not pinching the tip of the condom (this leaves a spot of air so that the semen has somewhere to go and the condom doesn't break), using a condom inside-out, opening a condom wrapper with something sharp, and not using lube. The other ones are pretty self-explanatory, but not using lube (which between 16 and 25.8 percent of people don't) isn't good because it raises the risk of the condom ripping. Also, if you don't stay wet enough, it can become sore. Also try putting some lubrication in the tip of the condom, as this can be more pleasurable.
It also seems that condom use decreases with age. It's great that younger teens/adults are using condoms, but the older guys should know better. Men, you should know that your sperm can impregnate a lady even late in your life. And with women getting pregnant later and later these days, you should be especially careful. Don't assume that a woman is no longer able to have kids.
Also, if you're worried about bringing up the idea of using condoms, don't be. Trust me, it will be much more awkward telling someone you are pregnant after not dating long or that they need to get checked. Also, girls, if guys try to feed you any bullshit along the lines of, 'I can't use condoms' or 'I don't feel anything when I use condoms,' beware. First of all, some guys do have difficulties with condoms, but that's not an excuse to not use birth control. If they truly can't (and aren't just lying), there are tons of other forms of birth control (also, abstinence). And yes, the feeling can be decreased, but this will make sex last longer (probably). Like I said, if this is the case, trying putting some lube in the tip of the condom. Or, warm up with a lot of foreplay and do other things (safely) before putting the condom on so he can get the full sensation. There are ways around it.
How to put on a condom:
1. Take the package out of safe place. MEN: DO NOT carry condoms in your wallets! Microscopic tears can occur, leaving your partner susceptible to diseases and/or pregnancy. Keep them in the original box in a safe place in your house or car (making sure they aren't exposed to extreme temperatures)
2. Check the wrapper for damage.
3. Rip open the package with your fingers. DO NOT use a sharp object! You run the risk of tearing the condom.
4. Place the condom on the head of the penis (make sure it is going to unroll the right way), then pinch the tip. Make sure there is no air stuck inside, and gently roll down (you can try doing this with your mouth, some guys find that sexy).
5. Make sure the condom fits and is on all the way. Add some lube (make sure it's a lubrication that's compatible with latex. Water-based is the best kind, as oil-based can weaken latex and make it break).
6. Leave it on the whole time. Before, during, and after sex. Pull out quickly and make sure to pull it off in a way that doesn't spray sperm everywhere. Then throw it away. DO NOT REUSE CONDOMS.
Again, oil-based lubricants should not be used with latex condoms. Always get water-based. Oil-based can often be irritating to vaginal/anal skin. Lubes containing glycerin, fragrances or any flavors tend to irritate and are not good for sensitive skin. I highly suggest Astroglide's Natural Lubrication, as it's made with natural ingredients and is water-based (great for use with condoms). Also, if you have a sensitivity to latex, try a different kind, such as sheep's skin condoms (NatraLamb) or polyisoprene. They are a bit more expensive, but they are worth it. Otherwise, look into other forms of birth control. And of course, make sure you and your partner are STD/STI free and monogamous. If your partner has an STD or you aren't monogamous, make sure you know when they have breakouts and/or that they are using protection with other partners. Have a great night ;) Wrap it up!
P.S. Many college campuses offer free condoms, as well as clinics such as Planned Parenthood.
P.P.S. If you're reading this, 'Like' my blog's Facebook page, The Sex Kitten!
Astroglide Natural Lubricant
CDC HIV Fact Sheet
Men's Health News-15 Condom Mistakes You're Making
Planned Parenthood STDs/HIV