What is spermicide and how do I use it?

Spermicide is a chemical that inactivates sperm. Most spermicides in the United States contain a chemical called nonoxynol-9. Spermicide which can be used alone or with all the other barrier methods except the sponge, which already contains a spermicide. Spermicide comes in different forms, including foams, creams, gels, suppositories, and films.
When used alone, a spermicide should be inserted into the vagina close to the cervix. After inserting you need to wait around 15 minutes after insertion for the spermicide to become effective. Read the label carefully to see how long before sex you need to insert the spermicide into your vagina. Remember that spermicides are effective for only 1 hour after they are inserted into the vagina . You must reinsert spermicide for each act of sex separately . Do not douche or try to remove the spermicide for at least 6 hours after insertion.

What are the benefits, risks, and side effects of using spermicide?


  • Spermicides are easy to use and easily available to buy in many pharmacies.
  • Spermicides have no effect on a woman’s natural hormones.
  • Spermicides cost less than other birth control methods.
  • If you are breastfeeding Spermicides do not affect milk supply.

Possible risks and side effects of Spermicides :

  • They can cause vaginal burning and irritation . Some people are allergic to spermicide and may have a some reaction.
  • Spermicides that contain nonoxynol-9 does not protect against STIs, which is including infection with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and may alos increase the risk of getting HIV from an infected partner if used many times a day. Spermicides should be only used if you have only one sexual partner and both of you are at low risk of HIV infection.