Safe Relations IQ - The Do’s and Don’ts of Latex Barrier Use and Care

When it comes to safe relations, most men believe they can just “roll it on and go,” but the truth of the matter is, there is more to safe and appropriate latex barrier use than just sliding one on.  In fact, improper latex barrier use can actually increase the risk of unwanted pregnancy and infection from partner transmitted diseases. Check out these simple and straightforward do’s and don’ts for using and storing latex barriers to ensure maximum effectiveness and protection.  After all, a man can never be too careful about maintaining a healthy male organ!

Latex barrier Do’s & Don’ts

  1. Do open the latex barrier carefully using the easy-tear edges (the zig-zag side).

Don’t use scissors or teeth to rip open the package, as this could tear the latex barrier.

  1. Do store latex barriers in a temperature-controlled, dry place.

Don’t leave latex barriers in the glove box or bathroom where extreme temperature and humidity can damage the latex.

  1. Don’t carry latex barriers around in a wallet as the pressure and folding on the latex barrier can damage it.

Do check the expiration date before use and discard any that are expired.

  1. Don’t ever reuse latex barriers – even if they appear as though no bodily fluid is in them.  Once the activity is over, discard the used latex barrier in the trash can.

Do change latex barriers if switching between different types of intimate activity to prevent infection and the spread of E. coli.

  1. Do use latex barriers during oral contact, as certain infections can be passed from the male organ to the mouth and vice versa.

Don’t use latex barriers that do not fit properly.  Latex barriers that are too loose or too tight can tear or slip off inside a partner. If the size is incorrect, purchase a different brand and size.

  1. Don’t attempt to put a latex barrier on a flaccid male organ, as it is likely to fall off or fit improperly.

Do ensure there are no baggy or loose spots on the latex barrier, smooth out any air bubbles to ensure a proper fit.

  1. Don’t apply an oil- or petroleum-based lubricant to a latex barrier, as it can compromise the material.

Do select a water or silicon-based lubricant, which is safe to use with latex barriers.

  1. Do remove latex barrier immediately after use and discard.

Don’t allow the male organ to become soft before withdrawal from one’s partner, as the latex barrier may accidentally fall off inside.

  1. Do use a latex barrier during each and every encounter.

Don’t skip the latex barrier, ever, for any reason, except in a committed, monogamous relationship.

Other safe relations tips:

  • Check which way the latex barrier unrolls before attempting to place it on the male organ.  Attempting to unroll it incorrectly can cause a rip to form, in which case the latex barrier needs to be discarded.  If the latex barrier is placed on the male organ inside out at first, it should also be discarded as fluid may have gotten on that portion of the latex barrier.  Simply turning the latex barrier around may increase the chance of pregnancy.
  • A small drop of lube placed inside the latex barrier tip can make it easier to apply over an uncut male organ and reduce the chance of tearing.  Only use a small amount, so that the reservoir still has room to catch fluid, and only use the appropriate kind of lube based on the type of latex barrier.
  • When putting the latex barrier on, pinch the tip of the latex barrier shut to eliminate the air pocket before carefully rolling it down over the firm male organ.
  • If one or both partners has a latex allergy, try polyurethane barriers instead.
  • One can often get latex barriers 100% free of charge at local health clinics, so the cost of obtaining latex barriers should never be a factor for not using them.
  • To maintain proper hygiene and prevent bacterial infections, it is always a good idea to hop in the shower after intimacy.  The combination of body fluids and lubricant can also cause itching, irritation and odor. After getting out of the shower, apply a male organ health cream (health professionals recommend Man 1 Man Oil) containing vitamin A to keep bacteria at bay and keep the male organ fresh and clean.

For additional information on most common male organ health issues, tips on improving male organ sensitivity, and what to do to maintain a healthy male organ, visit: John Dugan is a professional writer who specializes in men's health issues and is an ongoing contributing writer to numerous online web sites.