Image Caption : Superior view of spermicide in suppository form. Spermicide is a female chemical and mechanical contraceptive that is inserted into the vagina that blocks entry into the uterus as well as killing sperm. There are many different kinds of spermicide, including foam, cream, film, jelly, and suppositories. Spermicides are available without a prescription. When used correctly, they have a failure rate of 20 - 50%. Spermicides offer minimal protection against STDs.

Birth Control

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

Spermicide is a contraceptive substance that destroys sperm, inserted vaginally prior to intercourse to prevent pregnancy. As a contraceptive, spermicide may be used alone. However, the pregnancy rate experienced by couples using only spermicide is higher than that of couples using other methods. Usually, spermicides are combined with contraceptive barrier methods such as diaphragms, condoms, cervical caps, and sponges. Combined methods are believed to result in lower pregnancy rates than either method alone.

Spermicides are unscented, clear, unflavored, non-staining, and lubricative.

The material on this site is for informational purposes only and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any medical condition. Consult a licensed medical professional for the diagnosis and treatment of all medical conditions and before starting a new diet or exercise program. If you have a medical emergency, call 911 immediately.