Natural Abortifacients or Spermicide
During the ‘shoulder’ periods between red and green days if you desire a bit of extra protection, many traditional herbs can assist in fertility control as well. Keep in mind that herbs known to be abortifacients or to have spermicide property are always more successful the sooner they are used. If you are using a natural herbal method that is safe or even healthy for the woman, a little dose the morning after can even be beneficial!
Neem oil is a promising herbal spermicide and antiviral which has been used in India. Tests are just beginning, but its reputation is impressive. It is suggested that it can be placed within the vagina before or after sex. It stinks though, like onions, but doesn’t waft outside of the vagina and wears off within a few hours. It would make a good after-sex balm. However, because of it's pungent odor and taste it is NOT recommended for use in oral sex!
Women have used the seeds from Daucus carota commonly known as wild carrot or Queen Anne’s Lace, for centuries as a contraceptive, the earliest written reference dates back to the late 5th or 4th century B.C. appearing in a work written by Hippocrates.
After-sex DIY Spermicide Options
When used on infertile or moderately fertile days, it is possible to reduce pregnancy by creating an atmosphere in the vagina where sperm cells can not survive. Needing an alkaline environment to thrive, sperm has trouble living in an acidic vagina. To increase acidity, it is recommended to use a diluted lemon solution as a post-coital douche. Although lacking abundant clinical trials, lemon is thought to be safer than the chemical used in most commercial spermicides: Nonoxynol-9. This chemical is found in several types of condoms as well as many personal lubricants and is correlated with a corrosion of the epithelial lining of the vagina.
One source recommends using 3 drops of fresh lemon juice in one tablespoon of aloe vera gel immediately after sexual intercourse. Aloe can be substituted for 1 tablespoon raw, organic honey. As far as the question of vaginal irritation, the jury is out. Some studies report that citrus juice may cause a burning or itching sensation in the vagina, while others conclude that lemon and lime juices are far less of an irritant than store-bought spermicidal products. Regardless, we would recommend experimenting with very diluted doses of lemon juice before attempting to use the full-potency recipe above, to avoid any potential serious reactions.
There has been a long-running myth that Coca-Cola can be used as an effective spermicidal post-coital douche, but its abundance of unnatural ingredients and refined sugars deplete its appeal. In fact, one Harvard study found that, although the soda did immobilize 30 percent of sperm cells, it also increased the velocity of the remaining ones, making them even more likely to reach the egg! Thus, we recommend avoiding this remedy, regardless of its fame.
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- Ask Dr. Amanda
- Natural Spermicide
- National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine
- Sister Zeus