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Barrier Methods
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Section 1

- Objectives
> Available
- Good Health
- Characteristics
- Characteristics
- Users
- Global
- Pregnancy
- STDs
- Counseling
- Instruction

Section 2
Section 3


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Section 1 - Overview of Barrier Methods

Currently Available Barrier Methods

Physical Barriers:Examples of Physical Barriers

  • male condom
  • female condom
  • diaphragm
  • cervical cap
Examples of Physical Barriers


Chemical Barriers:

  • spermicides
  • vaginal sponge

Examples of Chemical Barriers

Slide 2

Barrier methods are among the oldest methods used to prevent pregnancy and to prevent the sexual transmission of diseases. Barrier methods include the male condom and female-controlled methods — the female condom, diaphragm, cervical cap, spermicides and vaginal sponge.

As the name indicates, each method creates a barrier that prevents sperm from reaching the egg or prevents the transmission of disease-causing microorganisms. Some do this primarily by creating a physical barrier: the male and female condom, diaphragm and cervical cap. Spermicides and the vaginal sponge rely primarily on a chemical barrier agent that kills the sperm or microorganism.

Barrier methods can be used alone, in combinations, or with non-barrier types of contraception.

When used in combination, their overall effectiveness against pregnancy and infection increases.

According to surveys, about 45 million married couples of reproductive age are using the male condom for contraception worldwide. Millions more who are not included in these surveys also use the male condom. About six million couples worldwide report using either spermicides, the diaphragm or the cervical cap. The diaphragm, cervical cap and sponge are not generally available in developing countries, and the female condom is only now becoming available.



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