This birth control device is a latex (rubber) sleeve that fits snugly over the penis and is used to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections such as AIDS, hepatitis, HPV, gonorrhea, herpes and chlamydia. This method of birth control is easy-to-use and relatively inexpensive. Condoms are especially effective when they are used in conjunction with spermicides (creams or jellies that contain chemicals that kill sperm and some disease-causing microorganisms). When properly used, condoms provide a high rate of protection (96% effectiveness) against pregnancy. Heat (such as from storing a condom in a glove compartment on a hot day) and oil-based lubricants can weaken the rubber in condoms and cause them to break. While the vast majority of condoms are latex, some are made from animal membranes; membrane condoms are not effective in preventing the transmission of diseases because viruses and bacteria can pass through microscopic pores in the membrane.
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