SEX – not the biological attribute we are born with (being the male or the female) but the ‘sexual intercourse’ which can take place whether consciously or unconsciously is a task which is essential in every human’s life.
Unsafe Sex- the ground for various sexually transmitted diseases which are still incurable and are the outcome of the union without the usage of any protection is the prime reason of a serious concern.
Protection, covering, contraceptives or Condoms are not just flashy measures or words loosely used in heated discussions but are essential components when one is seeking union in an intercourse.
The present day trend of ‘Friends-with-benefits’ or ‘No Strings Attached’ relationships has boomed the rate of sexual intimacies where both the partners indulge in the passionate and joyful act of love making without any emotional baggage or responsibility.
But ever wondered these protections that we talk of, especially, ‘Condoms’, when were they first used, what was the need way back in earlier centuries when partners were glued to just one woman or what materials were used as elements to make such a covering?
Sex is the basic human need which is polygamous in nature – The more, the Better!
But polygamy is prohibited in every religion and is considered immoral and sinful act in the eyes of god. Christianity limits the act of sexual intimacy to the extent of producing children and not for lustful pleasure. But religion takes a back seat when lust overpowers the human consciousness.
Both the male and the female indulge in the act and are prone to certain natural phenomenon which takes place after the act consummates. The rate of increasing unwanted pregnancies or the transmission of sexually transmitted diseases is a reason of alarming concern and that is the reason why a measure such as ‘Condom’ came into existence.
The condoms date back to Renaissance and the oldest excavated condom was found to be made from animal membrane dating back to 1642. Before 1500’s the responsibility of birth control laid on the shoulders of women but men adopted measures like ‘coitus interruptus’ or ‘anal sex’ as methods to prevent unwanted pregnancies until the use of artificial covering came into prominence.
Before the 18th century there have been veiled references of the varied materials which were used as condoms and no documented proof exists. This is interesting as how men used astonishing elements to prevent semen going into the vagina by either covering the penis in tar or soaking it in onion juice. Lamb intestines, goat’s bladder, oiled silk paper, tortoise shell, animal horn were few elements which were used as ingredients to make Condoms.
In 16th century, Gabriele Falloppio introduced a more chemical way by soaking linen sheaths in a chemical solution and then covering the dried cloth on the glans of the penis and tying a knot with the ribbon.
The 18th century tends to see a decline when men started rejecting the usage of external protection as it led to the discomfort and lack of pleasure in the act of sexual intercourse. But it also increased the risk of syphilis in the population because of which condoms came back into practice.
The condoms were available in variety of qualities and sizes which were made from linen treated with chemicals or skin which was softened by treatment of sulphur and lye. These were openly sold at places like pubs, barbershops, chemist shops, theaters etc. But they were mostly used by the upper or the middle class and were un-affordable to the working class because of the lack of knowledge and money.
With the expanding market and introduction of rubber, the 19th century saw a shift in the material with which condoms were made.
The first rubber condom was produced in 1855 and because of its ability of reuse it became a more economical choice. It was not only cheaper in price but also offered better sensitivity.
Earlier these rubber condoms only covered the glans of the penis but special sized coverings could also be ordered as per the individual requirement. But after a period rubber manufactures manufactured full length one-size-fits-all condoms which were sold in pharmacies.
Though the moralists and the law makers considered usage of condoms as obscene and immoral for the society in general but by the World wars their usage was made legal to assure the health of the men used as army and to prevent sexually transmitted diseases.
With the invention of Latex, rubber suspended in water the production of condoms boomed as it was now more comfortable and smooth. With the coming of print media and technology the importance of its usage was brought to fore through advertisements.
The condoms were openly sold in supermarkets along with other household products. Developments and advancements have been occurring in the condom market. The first polyurethane condom branded Avanti produced by the manufacturer Durex was introduced in the 1990’s and it also launched its website in 1997.
Condoms in different shapes, size, and textures have been used from the royalty to the common peasant. It’s a necessary measure which one needs to adopt if it’s indulging in sexual pleasure. Sexual intimacy is the physical need but usage of protection such as condoms is not only a moral duty but a responsible step which can assure the safe health of both the partners and prevent unwanted pregnancies.
Use Condom and have safe Sex!