Image Caption : Contraceptive Diaphragm : Anteriosuperior view of a diaphragm. A diaphragm is a female mechanical contraceptive that blocks the cervix so sperm cannot enter the uterus. It should be used in combination with a spermicidal agent. A diaphragm is only available with a prescription and needs to be fitted by a doctor. When used correctly, it has a failure rate of 17%. It offers minimal protection against STDs.
Also called: Contraception
Birth control, also known as contraception, is designed to prevent pregnancy. Birth control methods may work in a number of different ways. These include
- Preventing sperm from getting to the eggs - condoms, diaphragms and intrauterine devices (IUDs) work this way
- Keeping the woman's ovaries from releasing eggs that could be fertilized - birth control pills work this way
- Sterilization, which permanently prevents a woman from getting pregnant or a man from being able to get a woman pregnant
Your choice of birth control should depend on several factors. These include your health, frequency of sexual activity, number of sexual partners and desire to have children in the future. Your health care provider can help you select the best form of birth control for you.
NIH: National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
The diaphragm is a cervical barrier type of birth control. It is a soft latex or silicone dome with a spring molded into the rim. The spring creates a seal against the walls of the vagina.
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