What is a Dental Dam/Oral Barrier?
Dental dams are thin pieces of latex that can be used to protect against sexually transmitted infections during oral sex or rimming (anilingus). They come in the shape of a small square or rectangle and each sheet should be used once. Oral Barriers, when used properly, can help reduce your risk of getting an STI/STD.
Do’s and Don’ts for Proper Usage of Dental Dams:
- Dental Dams are single use only. No different than a condom, you should NEVER reuse a dental dam.
- Use a new dam if switching from vaginal to anal sex or vice versa.
- Only use one side of a dental dam. Do not flip over.
- Do not apply your mouth to the side of the dental dam that was exposed to bodily fluids.
- Dental dams can be used with lubricants to increase sensation and to help the dam from sticking but don’t use oil-based lubricants such as petroleum jelly.
- Place the dam over the vagina or anus prior to performing oral sex. Do not stretch the dam but rather lay it over the area holding it in place.
- Dispose of the dam in a trash can when done. Do not flush down the toilet.
More Myths and Misconceptions about STI/STD’s:
Some people believe that as long as you are not having sex, you cannot catch an STD. This is simply not the case.
Some sexually transmitted diseases, such as pubic lice (crabs) and scabies can be easily passed from partner to partner just through skin-to-skin contact.
Other STI/STD’s can be passed through genital contact even without intercourse.
Current Articles re Dams:
Safer Sex is Sexy!