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Safe Sex: Using the Sponge as Birth Control

The sponge contraceptive is just that, a sponge that contains a spermicide that blocks the opening to the cervix. Of course, not all contraceptives are equally effective. It is not the most reliable nor an especially safe method of contraception, but it is readily available. While you may prevent an unintended pregnancy, you will still be at risk of contracting an STD if you use a sponge.

Advantages of the sponge: You don’t need a doctor’s prescription because you can get the sponge over the counter.

Disadvantages of the sponge: Because using the sponge came with a risk of toxic shock syndrome, and because of manufacturing difficulties, the sponge was eventually pulled from the American market. Although it has been brought back, any woman interested in the sponge should be cautious and read all the fine print before you decide to use this device.

The sponge does not protect against STDs and should be used in conjunction with a condom if you may be at risk.

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