My Condom Broke

My Condom Broke. Now What?

Studies have shown that condom breakage and slippage can be as low as 0.4%, but is often attributed to using an expired condom or using a condom incorrectly. If your condom broke during sex, or if you had unprotected sex and are worried about the risks, you have options. Take charge of the situation and read below about what to do next.

Then, find out how to use condoms the right way to prevent condom breakage and slippage here.

I’m worried that I got an STD.

If your condom broke, slipped, or you had unprotected sex, get tested as soon as possible for STDs. Many STDs, such as chlamydia and gonorrhea, are bacterial and easily cured by taking an antibiotic. Some STDs only require one dose of antibiotics — such as syphilis, which is treated with a single injection by your doctor.

Other STDs, such as HPV, are caused by a virus that can be suppressed and regulated with medication.

The earlier you get tested for STDs, the more options you have. Visit your local clinic or your doctor right away if you think you could have been exposed to an STD.

For more information on protecting yourself against STDs, visit: http://dctakesonstds.com/

I’m worried that I was exposed to HIV.

If you had unprotected sex with someone who you believe is living with HIV, you can take a medicine called PeP (post-exposure prophylaxis), which if used within 72 hours can prevent you from contracting the HIV virus. A doctor will give you daily medication to take for 28 continuous days, which has little to no side effects but can prevent you from developing HIV if you have been exposed.

A doctor will first test you for HIV to make sure you do not already have the virus. This is because taking PeP when you already have HIV can make your body resistant to the drugs used to treat the virus later on. For this reason, it is important to get tested by a medical professional for HIV and not take medication that a friend or family member gives you.

If you are frequently having unprotected sex with individuals who do not know their HIV status or are living with HIV, you can ask your doctor for PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis). PrEP is a daily vaccine against HIV that is 92% effective in preventing HIV transmission. For more info on PrEP, visit: http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/prevention/research/prep/

I’m worried that I could be pregnant.

If your condom breaks or you had unprotected sex, Plan B One-Step is a type of emergency contraception that can be used to prevent pregnancy after sex. It is sometimes called the “morning-after pill,” but you don’t need to wait until the morning after sex to take it. The sooner you take it, the more effective it is, but you can take it up to 72 hours after sex.

Plan B is available over the counter at most major pharmacies. You do not need a prescription to obtain Plan B. If you cannot afford Plan B call your local health clinic to find out if they can provide it for you.

Plan B is not an “abortion pill” (also known as RU-486) because it does not terminate an existing pregnancy. Instead, it prevents pregnancy from occurring by preventing or delaying ovulation, or interfering with fertilization of an egg.

It is 95% effective when taken within 24 hours of unprotected sex.

It is still 89% effective when taken within 72 hours of unprotected sex.

Plan B won’t protect you from STDs or HIV; it is only for preventing pregnancy. Also, it’s not as effective as other forms of birth control such as condoms, the pill, an IUD or hormone implants, so it’s not meant to be used as your primary form of birth control. If you don’t want to get pregnant, always use a condom and/or another form of birth control.