What Is a Diaphragm? The diaphragm is a rather soft, thin rubber cup that is putted in the vagina before coitus. It is a " protect " method of contraception and one of its advantages is minimal side actions. The diaphragm covers the cervix uteri and obstructs sperm to penetrate into womb. When suitably used with spermicidal jelly or cream each time you have coitus, the diaphragm can be 97% effective. As women differ in the size and form of the vagina, diaphragms are made in several sizes and types. Only doctor or nurse during a pelvic exam may define the correct size and type.
When Do I Insert the Diaphragm? The diaphragm must be putted before coitus. In case coitus does not occur within 2 hours, a second application of the spermicide is necessary. You shouldnít remove diaphragm. Put the additional jelly or cream with an applicator. An application of spermicide is necessary each time you have coitus. But be careful! Donít displace the diaphragm with the applicator.
Diaphragm -- accessible by prescription at McKinley Health Center pharmacy; comes in its own plastic case.
Spermicidal Jelly or Cream - accessible by prescription at McKinley pharmacy; accessible from both Health Resource Centers; accessible at other pharmacies for purchase over-the-counter.
Plastic Applicator - for inserting additional spermicide. Accessible at McKinley and generally comes inside the spermicide package.
How Do I Insert It? First of all, before handling the diaphragm, wash your hands. Before interpose, put about 1 tablespoon of spermicidal jelly or cream into the dome of the diaphragm and smear some around the rim. If you like, apply a small quantity to the outside of the diaphragm to aid insertion. The diaphragm may be putted while you are standing, squatting or reclining. (It can also be putted by your partner.)
In the beginning, using the thumb and first 2 fingers, press the rim together so that the diaphragm folds in the middle. With the other hand, draw apart the vaginal lips. Now, put the diaphragm into the vaginal canal and tenderly push the diaphragm along the vaginal floor as far as possible, to make sure it passes the cervix uteri. The diaphragm will open up once inside; now, tuck the front rim up behind your pubic bone. Check to make sure the cervix uteri is covered! Run your finger over the surface of the diaphragm - you should feel the cervix uteri behind the diaphragm. If the diaphragm is improper, remove it and reinsert one more. Be sure and check the cervix uteri again.
When and How Do I Remove It? The diaphragm must be kept in place 6 - 8 hours after coitus. In order to remove the diaphragm, hook your finger under the front rim and tenderly pull down and out. If you have some difficulty with removal, bear down, while squatting, and pull on the diaphragm.
Care of Your Diaphragm: When you removed the diaphragm, wash it with a mild soap and water. Irrigate it with clean water. Dry carefully. Do not use perfumed soaps containing cold cream or abstergents to wash the diaphragm. The elements in these soaps may have a injurious effect on the latex rubber diaphragm.
Powder the diaphragm gently with cornstarch and replace it in the container. Do not allow the diaphragm to air dry. Donít use any type of body powder, baby powder, flour or face powder, as they may damage the latex rubber diaphragm. Do not use cold cream, Vaseline or other oily substances as a diaphragm lubricant, as these may also be injurious to the diaphragm.
1. In case you gain or lose 10 lbs. or more, or become pregnant, the diaphragm should be reequipped.
2. If you think you may have coitus, you can put your diaphragm before you go out. Be sure you insert additional jelly with the applicator before sex (if more than 2 hours).
3. In the past, women thought that it is necessary to use certain positions during sex. There is no reason to support this. Don't worry about dislodging the diaphragm if it is fitted and inserted correctly.