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In response to COVID-19, we have made changes to our services. 

From Monday 23 March 2020, there is no walk in service at Unity Central Health Clinic or WISH Centre and some of our Community Clinics are closing.   

Changes may occur at short notice.  Click HERE for up to date service information.  

During this time, please do not leave feedback on the website.


What is a condom

Condoms are made from very thin latex (rubber), or plastic (polyisoprene or polyurethane).

They are 98% effective if used correctly and used every time you have sex.

  • How does a condom work?

    Condoms are a barrier method of contraception. They stop semen from making contact with a sexual partner; thus making a physical barrier between them.

    Condoms can protect against some STIs, if used correctly during vaginal, anal and oral sex, as well as act as a contraceptive.

    You can access a leaflet for more information about condoms here.

  • Are there any advantages to condoms?
    • You only need to use them when you have sex
    • They help to protect both partners from sexually transmitted infections
    • There are no serious side-effects to using condoms
    • They come in a variety of shapes and sizes so should feel comfortable
    • They are easily available
  • Are there any disadvantages?
    • They can slip off or split
    • Some people are sensitive to latex – but this is rare
    • The penis has to be pulled out after ejaculation, and before the penis goes soft, holding the condom firmly in pla
  • Can anything make condoms less effective?
    • If the penis touches a partner’s genitals before the condom is put on
    • The condom comes off or splits
    • The condom gets damaged (sharp fingernails, jewellery etc)
    • Oil-based lubricants can damage latex/polyisoprene condoms
    • Creams or medications can damage latex/polyisoprene condoms e.g. thrush cream or pessaries


    If you are worried that you have had a condom accident, or a condom has been damaged during sex, and you may be at risk of pregnancy, please look at our Emergency contraception page.

  • Where can I get condoms?
    • Condoms are free at sexual health services, including at Unity sexual health.
    • C.Card:  If you are under 25 you can get a C card. Click here for more information.
    • You can buy condoms – from supermarkets, pharmacies, other shops, online, or vending machines.

More information including how to use condoms can be found here.


Locate a confidential service

Find your local Pharmacy or Clinic and book a confidential appointment.

Order a testing kit

Worried about STIs or other sexual health problems? You can request a confidential free home testing kit.

Find out More

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