New Vaginal Ring Could Prevent Pregnancy & HIV
May 13, 2014
In a world of smart phones and Wi-Fi, it’s hard to believe that there is currently no way to protect yourself from both sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and pregnancy other than using condoms correctly and consistently when having vaginal sex. Well, one day this may no longer be the case.
A new intravaginal ring—a flexible ring inserted into the vagina—is currently in the works. It would be the first birth control method since the condom to also help prevent the transmission of HIV and herpes.
When I first heard about this, I couldn’t help but think that this is the birth control of the future! While condoms are pretty popular with teenagers, they are only effective at preventing STDs and unplanned pregnancy if they are used every time a person has vaginal sex. This new intravaginal ring works similarly to the birth control method, NuvaRing. However, unlike NuvaRing, it provides protection from HIV and herpes and can remain in the vagina for up to 90 days. This means there are fewer chances for human error occurring (like when someone forgets the Pill or incorrectly uses a condom), which means pregnancy and the transmission of herpes and HIV is less likely with this new method.
It’s important to note, though, that while this birth control method can potentially protect the user against herpes and HIV, the person using this method could still contract other STDs, such as chlamydia and gonorrhea. Not to mention, only the person using the ring is protected from HIV and herpes, the other partner could still be at risk.
While this intravaginal ring begins to be tested in women, the potential this safer sex method has to prevent HIV and herpes transmission and unintended pregnancies all at the same time is simply mind-blowing!