Tue | Sep 26, 2017

Doctor's Advice | Are two condoms better than one?

Published:Saturday | February 11, 2017 | 2:00 AM

Q Doc, I am terrified that I could get my girlfriend pregnant. So last month, what I decided to do is to put on two condoms before having sex with her - one on top of the other.

As a result, I now feel much safer! Admittedly, the sensation is not as good. But I can live with that.

Unfortunately, she is NOT happy about me wearing two condoms at once. She says that she doesn't like it, and that sex 'don't feel as good'.

What do think I should do, Doc? A friend of mine has told me that it might be dangerous to wear two condoms instead of one.

A No, it isn't dangerous. It cannot do either of you any harm. But I really don't think it is a great idea.

Look, a lot of young couples get the idea that maybe they ought to increase the safety of their contraception by using two condoms at once. But I assure you, it is totally unnecessary!

These days, condoms are made to real high standards. Provided people don't tear them with jewellery (like rings), and provided the female doesn't puncture them with teeth during oral sex, a condom is very safe.

Of course, young couples do occasionally break them through over-rough handling, but you should take care to avoid that! Put the device on carefully, and take it off carefully, and you should be OK.

Wearing two condoms is not recommended by the manufacturers, or by doctors. And the problem is that it does reduce sexual sensitivity - as you have discovered. I note that your girlfriend is complaining that 'sex don't feel as good' for her, and I expect she is right!

So please, just use one condom at a time. If that doesn't feel as safe as you would like, consider asking your young lady to provide some additional protection.

For instance, you two could use a thing called a 'contraceptive pessary'. This is a little tablet which you pop into the vagina just before sex. It dissolves in the warmth of the female's body. And if by some mischance, any of your sperms escaped from the condom and got inside her, the pessary would 'mop them up'.

Q Hi, Doc. I am going to start on the Pill. My doctor says it will be OK for me. I have got the first three packs, but how do I take them?

Could I just start tonight? Would I be protected right away? I would really like to have sex with my loving boyfriend.

A Please don't do that! You wouldn't be protected against pregnancy.

I do urge all young women who are thinking of going on the Pill to take note of this. The correct way of starting to take it is on the first day of your menses. If you do that, you will be protected immediately.

There are other ways of starting on the Pill, but they do not give you immediate protection.

Q Doc, I have a girlfriend in Havendale and another in Spanish Town. I have sex with both of them regularly.

Well, a week ago, I developed a yellow discharge from my organ and it became painful to pass urine. I went to the clinic, where they tested me and said I had gonorrhoea. I am receiving treatment.

But what is puzzling me is this, Doc. How can I find out which of these girls I caught 'the clap' from?

A You can't. No doctor could help you find this out, as it is impossible to know which of them this infection originated with.

What is almost certain, though, is that both of these poor girls must by now have got gonorrhoea. It sounds like you have been with each of them recently, so you would very probably have given the germ to the one who didn't have 'the clap'.

Therefore, what you should do now is to urge both young women to go to a clinic for tests and treatment. None of you should have sex with anybody until you are cured.

Q I am female, age 21. I am really not sure that I am orgasming, and I am fretting about this.

You see, Doc, when I get real excited with my fiancÈ, I give a little 'scream' or 'shriek'. It happens at the moment when I am at the height of enjoyment.

But I am not sure if this is the 'cry of orgasm' which I have read about.

What do you think, Doctor? How could I tell?

A It sounds to me like you are orgasming in a perfectly normal way. The 'cry' which you describe seems fairly typical of young women's orgasms.

If you want to be certain, you could utilise the Internet in order to check. On the net, there are a number of non-porn websites which offer the actual sounds of female orgasm, for the information of young women such as yourself. If you like, you could listen, but I feel sure that you should quit fretting.

Q I am a 17-year-old male, and I would like to know whether masturbation can give you cancer, as I have heard.

My uncle recently died of prostate cancer. Before he passed away, he told me that he wondered whether it was caused from the fact that as a young guy, he sometimes masturbated.

A This idea is totally wrong! In the old days, people were always saying that masturbation could lead to various illnesses. But today, we know that all this was foolishness. Researchers have been totally unable to discover any medical ill effects caused from masturbation.

As regards prostate cancer (which is so common in Jamaica), the facts are very different from what you have heard. Strangely enough, research indicates that males who had frequent orgasms when they were teenagers are less likely to get cancer of the prostate. I have no idea why that should be so, but there it is.

So your poor uncle's belief that he might have caused his cancer by masturbating was totally wrong. It is a great pity that he went to his grave with this mistaken idea.

Q Can you answer a question that is puzzling me and my female schoolmates, Doc. Is it true that a girl can get pregnant during her period?

Also, is it true that if she does become pregnant, there can be bad consequences for the baby?

A These are quite common concerns among young women. Yes, a female can sometimes get pregnant during her menses, but that is really unusual. Most women are infertile during the days of the period.

To answer your second query, I think you are referring to an age-old belief in some parts of Jamaica, to the effect that a baby who is conceived during the menses will be a so-called 'red' child - in other words, an albino.

This is nonsense. In the rare instances where a baby is an albino, it usually happens because he has inherited a faulty gene from the mother and the father. It has nothing at all to do with having sex during the menses.

- Email questions to Doc at saturdaylife@gleanerjm.com, and read more in the 'Outlook Magazine' tomorrow.