What is a Cervical Cap?
Dr. Kamela Khalid
Mosque road, Bengaluru Jan 25, 2017
A silicone cup that is made thimble-shaped to fit over the cervix, a cervical cap is an effective means of birth control. When placed in the uterine area that opens up into the vagina, it acts as a physical barrier that prevents the sperms from reaching the eggs.
Using cervical caps
This cap covers your cervix and prevents the sperms from entering the uterus. For added protection, you can add spermicides to the cap before placing it over the cervix.
Insertion: Can be upto 6 hours before engaging in intercourse
Removal: You must leave it on for a minimum of 6 hours
Do not leave it on beyond 48 hours
After use: Wash the cap with mild soap and water after which you can air dry it before placing it back in its case. Don’t use lubricants like oils and jelly as they make the material brittle and can cause cracks.
Possible side effects
These caps are quite effective in birth control but their effectiveness decrease after a pregnancy. These do not protect you against STDs so condoms need to be used in addition to caps to protect you against diseases.
- In some cases, spermicides irritate the vagina and surrounding skin
- Possible allergic reactions due to cap material or spermicides
- Changes in cervix due to irritation
- If the cap is left on for too long, it may result in strong odours, discharges and allergies
These caps are fit by doctors after a pelvic examination. They determine the right cap size to fit your cervix and teach you how to use them. Also, cervical caps must be replaced every year in order to maintain hygiene and effectiveness of birth control.