External Condom

This method might work for you if… you want STI protection.

A condom (external condom) covers an erect penis to prevent sperm from entering the vagina and finding an egg (or ova), which prevents pregnancy. Condoms are widely available in latex material but are also available in other materials for those with latex allergies. Condoms also help reduce the risk of STIs and therefore can also be used when people are using sex toys.

You can get condoms at convenience stores, pharmacies, health clinics and many other places. To use a condom: check the expiry date to ensure that the condom is not expired; check the package to ensure it is not open or torn; open the condom; pinch the tip of the condom before putting the condom on a penis, and ensure that the condom is being unrolled the correct way. It’s important to find the right size of condom so that the condom doesn’t come off. If the condom is not already lubricated (aka slippery) it can be helpful to use a lubricant when putting on and using the condom. However, it’s important not to use an oil based lubricant which can damage the condom. 

Condoms are 87% effective at preventing pregnancy with typical use. In Ottawa, condoms average to about $1 per condom (or $12 for a box of 12 condoms), depending on the brand you purchase. If you are looking for a condom that perfectly fits you, this is a great website where you can order a variety of sizes online. In Ottawa, you can also find free condoms at many community organizations including at Planned Parenthood Ottawa. Call us, email us, or stop by our office for some free condoms. Finally, you also order free condoms to your door from Ottawa Public Health by using this website.