Dental dams - A basic guide

Do you know what a dental dam is, what the benefits are and where to pick them up from? Find all of these out, and much more about dental dams with our basic guide! It’s a latex sheet that covers the vaginal or anal area

Dental dams are a latex sheet that covers the vagina/vulva or anal area (bum hole) for oral sex. You can use them for giving oral sex to someone with a vagina or for rimming (licking someone’s bum hole).

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They protect against STIs

The main benefit of dental dams is that they protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs). STIs can be passed on through oral sex and you can also get a bacterial infection from rimming.

You can get flavoured ones

Another benefit of dental dams is that they’re flavoured and fragranced, so if you’re not a big fan of the taste/smell of vagina or bum they may be a good option to include so you enjoy giving oral sex!

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They’re free!

You can pick up dental dams for free from our Sexual Health Prevention Team. We have drop-ins at local colleges, Staffordshire University, nightclubs and community groups. You can recognise us by our blue tops which say ‘Sexual Health Team’ - just pop over and ask for a dental dam!

You should use them with lube

Apply a bit of water-based lube to the vaginal/anal area before using the dam. This will make. Make sure it’s water-based lube though, as if the lube is oil-based it will erode the dam (as the dam is made of latex, and oil erodes latex). You can pick up water-based lube from our team.

They’re a one-time use thing

Like condoms, you shouldn’t use dental dams more than once. Using them more than once increases the chance of any infections spreading, damage to the dam and it isn’t very hygienic.

Use a new one if you’re switching from the vagina to the anus (or vice versa)

The vagina and anus contain different bacteria and these bacteria spreading can leave you with an infection, so using the same one for both areas is a no-no.

Dispose of it in a bin

Once you’ve used a dental dam, wrap it in some tissue and chuck it in a bin - don’t flush it down the toilet!

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