Why it's doneBy Mayo Clinic staff
The contraceptive sponge is an over-the-counter contraceptive device. The contraceptive sponge:
- Doesn't require a prescription or fitting
- Can be inserted hours before sex and provides protection from pregnancy for 24 hours
- Can be used as a backup method of birth control
- Doesn't require a partner's cooperation
The contraceptive sponge isn't appropriate for everyone, however. Your health care provider may discourage use of the contraceptive sponge if:
- You're sensitive or allergic to spermicide or polyurethane
- You have vaginal abnormalities that interfere with the fit, placement or retention of the contraceptive sponge
- You have frequent urinary tract infections
- You have a history of toxic shock syndrome
- You recently gave birth or had a miscarriage or an abortion
- You're at high risk of contracting HIV or you have HIV or AIDS
- You're at high risk of pregnancy — you're younger than age 30, you have sex three or more times a week, you've had previous contraceptive failure with vaginal barrier methods, or you're not likely to use the contraceptive sponge consistently
- Birth control methods fact sheet. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. http://www.womenshealth.gov/publications/our-publications/fact-sheet/birth-control-methods.cfm. Accessed Nov. 9, 2012.
- Yranski P. New options for barrier contraception. Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic and Neonatal Nursing. 2008;37:384.
- Barrier methods of contraception. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. http://www.acog.org/~/media/For%20Patients/faq022.pdf?dmc=1&ts=20121114T1235173378. Accessed Nov. 14, 2012.
- Zieman M. Overview of contraception. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Nov. 9, 2012.
- Today Sponge information leaflet. Mayer Laboratories Inc. http://www.todaysponge.com. Accessed Nov. 9, 2012.
- Hatcher RA, et al. Contraception Technology. 20th ed. New York, N.Y.: Ardent Media; 2011:391.