Spermicide is one type of birth control method, to be used by women. They are available in various forms such as cream, gel, foam, film, and suppositories. The spermicide needs to be placed in the vagina. Most spermicides contain nonoxynol-9.
They are meant to kill the sperm before they swim into the uterus and fertilize the egg.
All these forms of spermicides are effective for only one hour after they are inserted. While creams, gels, and foams are applied through applicator, other types of spermicides like vaginal contraceptive film are placed in the back of vagina by hand. Even suppositories are available, which can be inserted and the outer coating slowly melts releasing the spermicide into the vagina.
Spermicides may actually have side effects also. It is reported that 3percent to 5 percent of the women actually stopped using spermicide because of its side effects. Reportedly, even doctors advice women to use spermicide not more than 3 times a month.
Some of the side effects of spermicide are irritation in the vagina and surrounding area, recurrent urinary tract infection, and allergy. These spermicides may also cause irritation in the penis of the partner. Women who have a history of urinary infections ideally should not use spermicides and should opt for some other birth control method. Spermicides are also believed to cause ulcers or lesions in the genital tract. It is believed that the irritation caused due to spermicides can create tiny breaks in the skin and make it more prone to infections and even in contracting sexually transmitted diseases.
However, the women who do not experience any side effects can continue using it throughout their reproductive years and even women who are breastfeeding can use this method of birth control.
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