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Sometimes, we really just want to spice up our sex lives and still be safe. We will browse the internet, read magazines, ask friends for advice and tips on trying new things. We are sexual beings! And we are always looking for new and fun ways to have fun and safe sex. But, when it comes to protection against sexually transmitted diseases, we either talk about abstaining or using condoms. We overlook some of the other ways of prevention, such as latex gloves and dental dams.
Some people think that using a dental dam is weird or think that it could ruin the pleasure of oral sex. One comedian joked, "Using a dental dam is like going to a picnic and throwing the blanket over the food." Dental dams come in a variety of flavors. That does not have to be the case. Contrary to the misconceptions floating about, dental dams do not block or take away from the sensation of non-protected contact. Although we are sexual creatures and want to try new things, we do tend to stick to the tried and true. In the case, the tried and true is the use of condoms. And condoms are great! They are 98% affective in protecting against sexually transmitted diseases through vaginal and anal intercourse. But what about protection from STDs or STIs (sexually transmitted virus or bacteria that flourish in warm, soft, moist places, like the mouth) while performing oral sex?
Statistically, “1 in 4 young adults has a sexually transmitted disease1”. Sexually transmitted disease of the mouth are on the rise due to more young people opting for oral sex instead of vaginal sex. The only way to avoid contracting or spreading a sexually transmitted disease is to not have sex. But let’s be real. That’s just not completely realistic. If you’re going to engage in oral sex, why not spice it up with a dental dam and protect yourself and your partner?
A dental dam, or oral barrier is a small, thin, latex sheet that covers the mouth in order to be used as a form of protection from sexually transmitted diseases from vaginal or anal fluids while performing cunnilingus and/or analingus (oral sex). While dental dams’ primary use is for dentists to isolate the tooth during dental procedures, it’s become fun and sexy way to have safe oral sex. Unfortunately, when it comes to sex education, dental dams are often left out of the narrative of safe sex. And because of this exclusion, people are wary of it. At first glance, it can look cumbersome and intimidating. Dental dams come in a variety of colors and flavors for you to let your freak flag fly. And they’re vegan! Sexually safe and animal conscious? Talk about sexy!
To use a dental dam, Rinse with warm water and allow it to completely air dry. Once it’s dry, rev your partner’s love engine then place the latex square across the vagina or anus while performing oral sex. You can use a water-based lubricant to keep the damn from sliding.
Note: do not attempt to stretch the dental dam. If you find that the dam is too small, consider finding another one or finding an alternative method. One alternative method is to use a latex glove or non-microwavable saran wrap. Non-microwavable saran wrap is important because the pores in microwavable saran wrap are big enough for viruses to pass through.3 And don’t forget to rinse/wash and let it air dry before use. One thing that is not sexy is tasting the leftover residue from the inside of a latex glove.
To turn a latex glove into a dental dam or oral barrier, cut the fingers off of the glove while leaving the thumb in place. Make a slit up the side opposite the thumb and, again, rinse the residue from the glove. Place some of your water-based lubricant on the side of the latex to be against your partner’s vagina/anus. Place the lubricated side on your partner’s vagina/anus. Hold your hand-made oral barrier with both hands. Then, use your tongue to drive your partner insane. And for that extra, pleasurable fun, insert your tongue into the thumb. You can also take a cue from our kinky friends living the BDSM lifestyle and incorporate a blindfold, handcuffs, or some fun insertable toys.
Tell me that does not sound like a fun, sexy and safe time. Another way a dental dam can be used is when tribbing, which is a sex act in which a woman rubs her vulva against her partner's body for sexual stimulation, especially for ample stimulation of the clitoris. Placing the dental dam on your partner’s vulva, place your vulva or penis against her vulva, and stimulate her clitoris.
Using dental dams does not have to be scary, intimidating or cumbersome. In fact, using dental dams are quite the opposite: fun, sexy, versatile and safe.