Vaginal Dams or Dental Dams

Using a vaginal dam, also known as a denal dam will help protect you from several sexually transmitted diseases that you can get in your throat or via small cuts in your mouth, as with a blood-borne STD like Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, or HIV.

A dental dam, sometimes called an oral dam, is a six inch square piece of thin latex, (sometimes flavored), that’s available at most pharmacy chains and medical supply stores or via the internet at condom stores. Below is a photo of the brand Glyde™ Sheer Dams.

The dam should be placed over the entire vulva during oral sex to prevent the possible transmission of the HIV virus from the vagina to the mouth or the mouth to the vagina. (For more on HIV see that page and the links there). It can also be used to prevent the spread of genital herpes and any of the Hepatitis viruses

Always rinse the dam first to remove the powdery talc which should never enter the vagina or anus. Pat it dry with a towel, or let it air dry ahead of time. If you use a substitute, remember that some plastic, like that used for some garbage bags, can contain toxic chemicals. Please don't use these.

Spread the dam over the entire vulva, covering both the vaginal opening and clitoris, holding two edges of the dam with your hands. During oral-anal contact, use the dam to cover your partner’s anus. Never share the same dam. Never reuse one, and always use separate dams if you are practicing both oral-vaginal and oral-anal sex, because anal organisms can cause infection in the vagina.

Afraid the dam will be to annoying to use? It is at first. However, there are some steps you can take to free your hands during oral sex. One reader said she used scissors to cut a dam to fit and then sewed it into a pair of panties to create a dental dam holder. Any materials you use should be washable and have no sharp edges.

Remember to use a new dam each time you have oral sex. I have seen vaginal dams in chain drug stores. Those did seem a bit smaller in size, but they do stretch when rinsed. Check out websites that sell condoms for dams, most sell them. You can also use a condom if you have nothing else if the act we are talking about is fellatio only. Perhaps someone could use a condom on his tongue, but this is still not covering the entire genital area.

I know this sounds like it takes all of the fun out of sex, but an STD can take a lot of fun out of life.

Luckily, the most common STDs are treatable, but a virus is forever. A virus includes any of the many Human Papillomaviruses (genital warts), genital herpes, molluscum contagiosum, HIV, and any of the Hepatitis viruses.




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