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Condom Allergy? [Ask Dr. Miro: What You Didn’t Learn In Health Class]

Dear Dr. Miro,

I’ve insisted on using condoms with my girlfriend but she says she’s allergic to them. Is that even possible? I’m trying to be a responsible man but she’s making it really difficult and accusing me of not trusting her. So far this has resulted in me not getting ANY. I don’t feel like arguing about this and want to be with someone I can have sex with.

Have Condoms Will Travel

Dear HCWT,

Good for you for trying to use condoms! First of all, a responsible grown up man deserves to be with someone who does not accuse him of mistrust when in reality you are doing the most trusting of all things. Your current girlfriend may indeed be “allergic” to something having to do with the condoms. Does she get a rash when using latex gloves or some band-aids? This will be a big indicator as to whether or not she has a latex sensitivity. Latex allergies are a lot more common than most people imagine. If this, indeed, is the problem, you have great options! You could get a Poly-Urethane prophylactic, like the Trojan Supra, which is actually stronger and thinner than latex while transmitting body heat. Or, you could go with a Poly-Isoprene love glove. Both Durex’s Avanti Bare and Lifestyles’ Skyn will meet that choice. These are the newest technology and cost less than other materials. PLUS, they are amazingly soft, stretchy and strong.

If your GF’s sensitivity is not latex related, she may be reacting to chemicals and spermicides used in the pre-lubricated condoms, such as Nonoxynol-9. Though a seemingly a good idea, and as the name suggests, spermicides utilize substances that kill sperm. However, this happens due to the bleach like properties, which can cause rashes and lesions wherever it touches the skin. Not the best thing to put into a lover’s orifice, right? Read the ingredients on your condoms. Try to avoid chemicals that have no business being up in your business.

Of course, she may have physical reactions to condoms due to psychological issues and not to latex or lube ingredients. This is tricky territory that you may or may not wish to navigate slowly and surely. If this cannot be resolved, you may have to move on. Understand: you will find someone who can meet you on your level AND have an adult conversation about sex. She is out there.

Lust & Happiness,
Dr. Miro

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