For centuries only a woman’s body was suppose to be actively involved in contraception. With various pills, medicines and surgeries, it was left to the women to control the population. Barring the withdrawal method, men were hardly ever involved in contraception. Even the success rate of the withdrawal method was questionable as many failure rates were reported. In the last five decades, male contraception grew in popularity as it not just prevented pregnancy but also decreased the chances of contracting sexually transmitted diseases.
Male contraception has been divided into
- Old- In the old forms it meant that men would withdraw before there would release the seminal fluid in the female reproductive organ. This form was highly criticized as the failure rates were high. Also, it required a lot of practice and exposed men and women to sexually transmitted diseases. But the best feature of this form of contraception was that it was reversible.
- New- In the recent times there are various forms of male contraception available which have a higher success rate than withdrawal methods.
1. Condoms- In the last few decades, this has proven to be the most popular form of contraception. Its features are as follows:
- It is available at a very low price. In some countries, the government also gives off free condoms or they are available at highly subsidized rates.
- Can effectively prevent conception and at the same time provides protection against sexually transmitted diseases such as gonorrhea, syphilis and the highly fatal, AIDS. In countries where the numbers of AIDS victims are high, they promote the use of condoms for controlling the AIDS epidemic.
- It does not need medical assistance and can be used on own free will.
- There is no sides effect and does not require the daily discipline of popping the pill.
- Is available is various colors, designs and flavors to indulge the user.
- The effect is not permanent as men can stop using a condom when the plan to start a family.
- Needs prior planning
- Has the risk of being torn
- Some men believe that it decreases their sensation and excitement during sex.
2.Vasectomy- This is a surgical procedure where the vas defrens is cut and bound so as to prevent sperms from entering the seminal fluid. The features of vasectomy are as follows:
- It does not need high maintenance. Men do not need to wear a condom or pop a pill in order to prevent pregnancy each time they have sex.
- Once operated, success rate is 99 %, with reports of rare 1 % failure.
- Post heal up of the surgery, there are no side effects
- It takes a lot of convincing to get a man to perform this surgery as some men fear that it will make them less than of a “man” while some men are scared of coming under the knife.
- It does not protect the man or the woman from sexually transmitted diseases.
- The effects cannot be easily reversed.
3.Contraceptive pills- These are yet to gain the same popularity as female contraceptive pills and are still under research. This involves popping the pill on a daily basis so that the sperm count reaches zero.
- High efficacy rate at 99 %
- The effects are reversible
- Needs a lot of discipline as it has to be popped everyday.
- No protection again sexually transmitted diseases
- Few men are comfortable with the thought of having a zero sperm count