Cervical Cap

by Anai Rhoads

What is a cervical cap?

A cervical cap is a barrier to prevent sperm from even reaching the cervix. It is a little rubber shaped "dome", that if used correctly with spermicide, can be 87% effective in preventing pregnancy. It is one of the few drug free birth control methods available for women currently on the market.

Where can I get a cervical cap?

You can only purchase a cervical cap through your doctor. He or she will have to examine you, to see what size you will need. Never attempt to invent something on your own, or use another woman's cervical cap thinking it will work the same for you. It comes in limited sizes, but only a specific size will fit a particular woman.

How do I use it?

Pour a small amount of spermicide into the cervical cap. Your doctor will have shown you how to insert it and place it over your cervix safely. Make sure to always follow the directions given to you. Improper use will put you at risk of becoming pregnant.

When do I use the cervical cap?

You may insert your cervical cap several hours before having intercourse with your partner. Make sure to remember to put the spermicide in before inserting it. It may be left in place for up to 48 hours, and does not need removing after each sexual encounter for those 48 hours.

Is the cervical cap safe?

You would think something as innocent as a "little dome" would not have much cause for concern, but unfortunately, as with anything, there may be cause for concern. The following is a list of things you need to know before making the decision to see your doctor about getting a cervical cap fitted.

  • You may have an allergic reaction to the spermicide
  • You may have an allergic reaction to the latex
  • You will need frequent doctor's visits to check for abnormal cells that may occur from use of this cap. (You will be asked to come in for pap smears).
  • If you have a history of toxic shock from tampons (for example), you will not be able to use the cervical cap.
  • There is always a chance that the cervical cap may become dislodged, giving way for possible conception.

Call your doctor right away if you experience any rashes, soreness, or itchy discharge that is strong in odor.

Anai Rhoads is a medical and political researcher/writer with a particular interest in the sanctions on Iraq and the wider effect of racism's influence in the Middle East. A vegan since 2000, she is a dedicated supporter of activities which promote animal and human rights. Originally from Greece, she now resides in Virginia, USA with her husband and their two dogs, Bijou and Eva..

Copyright © Anai Rhoads. Permission to publish granted to Pregnancy.org, LLC.