82% typical; 86% perfect.
Cost-effective – each new diaphragm can be reused up to 2 years. Non-hormonal, easily reversible, no script required. Can be inserted hours before intercourse to prevent interrupting sexual spontaneity.
Requires a high level of user action, susceptible to imperfect use, interrupts sex, can be difficult to access.
How does a Diaphragm work?
A diaphragm is a small cap that sits at the entrance to your cervix and prevents sperm from getting through. The only model available in Australia is called “Caya” and can be purchased without a prescription. It comes with an accompanying barrier gel that should be used along with it every time.
The diaphragm must be inserted every time you have sex, along with the accompanying lactic acid buffer gel.
A diaphragm needs to stay in for no less than 6 hours after sex, but for no longer than 24 hours afterwards.
Despite being considered a barrier method, the Diaphragm is not like condoms, and can’t protect you from STIs.
Tip: For added peace of mind, use a diaphragm in conjunction with a male or female condom.
How do I use a Diaphragm?
The only diaphragm available in Australia is the “Caya” and it will come with its own instructions, which you should follow exactly as stated. These steps are a guide for people unfamiliar with the product.
Using a diaphragm can take some practice, so it’s a good idea to use backup contraception until you’re confident you’re doing it correctly. And remember to always read the instructions that come with your device.
Step 1. You can put your diaphragm in up to 2 hours before you have sex. If it’s longer than 2 hours before you start having sex, you’ll need to remove it and re-apply the barrier gel. Before inserting, wash your hands with soap and water, and apply the barrier gel to your diaphragm.
Step 2. Get into a position that is comfortable for insertion. If you use tampons, it can be handy to assume a similar position to when you’re inserting one.
Step 3. With one hand, pinch the rim of the diaphragm so that it’s folded in half. With the other hand, gently separate the lips of your vulva.
Step 4. With the dome pointing down, push the diaphragm as far into your vagina as it can go. The edge of the device should tuck in behind your pubic bone, ensuring that your cervix is covered.
Step 4. After intercourse, ensure that your diaphragm stays in place for no less than 6 hours and no more than 24 hours.
Step 5. To remove the device, hook your finger onto the retraction tab and gently pull the diaphragm down and out of your vagina.
Step 6. After use, wash the diaphragm with soap and warm water before letting it air dry. While washing it, fill it with water to check for any leaks.
Step 7. Store your diaphragm in a clean, dry place that’s away from heat and direct sunlight. Take the time to visually inspect it every 3 months or so. Check for any damage, such as perforations, tears, wrinkles or cracks.