Expiration Dates for Condoms: Utilize Professional Advice for Ensuring Your Safety.
PROPHYLACTICS ARE ONE of the most effective methods to prevent sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and unplanned pregnancies.
However, if you've been carrying around the same prophylactic in your wallet for longer than you can recall, you might want to reconsider before using it—because indeed, prophylactics do have an expiration date.
Can I utilize an expired prophylactic?You should never utilize an expired prophylactic—at least, not if you want it to remain intact and function properly. Before engaging in sexual activity, remember to examine the expiration date on the prophylactic. Most prophylactics have an expiration date on the wrapper, usually on the backside. (If you can't find an expiration date listed anywhere on the wrapper, we do not advise using it.) If you discover that the prophylactic is expired, do not use it! Instead, find one that is not expired. Or stick to making out.
More From Men's Health Note: Prophylactics sometimes sustain damage before the expiration date, so you should not solely rely on the date alone to determine if it is safe to use. Inspect the prophylactic when you remove it from the wrapper (subtly—you do not want to spoil the atmosphere by examining the prophylactic against the light like a jeweler inspecting the authenticity of a diamond.) If you open a prophylactic and it feels desiccated, has an unpleasant odor, or you observe any perforations, do not use it. Discard it and obtain a new one.
What is the duration of effectiveness for condoms before they expire?
The lifespan of a condom depends on its components, as explained by Jamin Brahmbhatt, MD, a urologist at Orlando Health. (Remember, there are various types of condoms available, including organic and vegan condoms.) Here's what you need to know about the expiration dates for four major condom types.
Latex condoms, the superior standard of condoms, typically endure for around four to five years. However, if the latex condoms contain spermicidal lubricants, their shelf life may be shorter.
Polyisoprene condoms, a synthetic alternative to latex for individuals with latex sensitivities, also have a lifespan of approximately four to five years.
Polyurethane condoms likewise usually have an expiration period of four to five years. (Polyurethane condoms are composed of a type of plastic, usually thinner for enhanced pleasure. However, Brahmbhatt cautions that they may have reduced elasticity.)
Lambskin condoms are produced from the intestinal membranes of lambs. They are less popular because they only provide protection against unwanted pregnancy and not sexually transmitted infections (STIs). They also have a shorter expiration date, ranging from two to three years.
How should I store my condoms?
Apart from expiration, inappropriate storage can also lead to reduced effectiveness and an increased risk of breakage for condoms. Condoms should be stored in cool, dry environments away from direct sunlight, as elucidated by Michael Ingber, MD, a urologist and urogynecologist at Garden State Urology.
"You should avoid storing them in your wallet, car glovebox, or bathroom where you take hot showers,” advises Brahmbhatt. This precaution should be taken since all of those locations can become excessively warm. Instead, consider keeping them in a drawer adjacent to your sleeping area or in a personal handbag.
Francesco Carta fotografo//Getty Images
How should I dispose of expired condoms?
You can simply discard them in the trash. “It is not recommended to flush the condom, with or without its wrapper, down the toilet, as it can cause toilet blockage,” advises Brahmbhatt. (Before discarding them, you might want to wrap them in tissue for discretion purposes, but that is a personal choice.)
Can I utilize expired condoms for sexual toys?
If you are sharing sexual toys with one or more partners during the same sexual session, it is advisable to wrap them to prevent the transmission of STIs.
You ought not to utilize a expired prophylactic for that purpose, either.
The reason is that sanitary products (including condoms) develop bacteria over time, Ingber explains. Therefore, using a condom that has expired, even on a sex toy, can escalate the likelihood of infections in that region.
I unintentionally used an expired condom—need help!Hey, it occurs. The positive news is that it's preferable to use an expired condom than no condom at all, describes Kristen Tribby, a certified sex educator at Fun Factory. "If the condom breaks, get tested for STIs, and consider taking Plan B if you are concerned about pregnancy (and have access to it)," she suggests.
Using an expired condom that has been properly stored is less worrisome than applying the condom incorrectly, or using a non-expired condom that has been improperly stored, according to Tribby. "It's somewhat akin to expired food," she explains. "I would feel more at ease consuming potato salad that has been refrigerated for a week rather than sitting out at a BBQ all day in the scorching sun and handled by twenty various individuals."
The bottom line? If possible, refrain from using an expired condom—and always store your condoms correctly.
Yeastie Boys and VML address male mental health through 'Blokequet'. 2023-11-28 00:02:13
Yeastie Boys and VML tackle male mental health with 'Blokequet', offering a refreshing and empowering approach for men's well-being.
Patrick Mahomes Declares Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce to Be Non-Distracting. 2023-11-27 01:20:18
Patrick Mahomes, Taylor Swift, and Travis Kelce: Discover how these non-distracting forces unite in the world of sports and music, creating an intriguing harmony that will captivate you. From touchdowns to top hits, immerse yourself in the captivating tales of these extraordinary talents. Explore now!
A Miniature Fire Truck Wrapped with a Movember Message 2023-11-26 01:02:20
Get ready to be amazed by a miniature fire truck completely wrapped in a Movember message. Don't miss out on this unique and captivating display that combines support for a great cause with the love for fire trucks. Click now to see this eye-catching creation!
Hakim Group's Fundraising Challenge: Strapping on Walking Boots 2023-11-25 01:20:30
Hakim Group conquers a fundraising challenge by strapping on their walking boots, impacting lives and building a brighter future. Get inspired and join the incredible journey today.